The Best Places For Civil Engineers 2020
ASCE’s Civil Engineering magazine researched and wrote this feature article before the widespread outbreak of COVID-19 and the subsequently declared pandemic in the United States. Since then, the health...

Reliability-Based Design (RBD) For Everyone: (No Monte Carlo Simulation Required!)
In North America, the design of earth structures for transportation applications is most often carried out using load and resistance factor design (LRFD). In the U.S., the AASHTO LRFD Bridge Design Specifications...

An Unknown-Unknown Does In An Overpass: A Soil Stockpile on Soft Clay Is Too Much for a Bridge in Canada
Like most structures, bridges are designed for an array of loading conditions. Some loads are known or can be reasonably estimated with confidence (i.e., known-knowns, such as structure dead and vehicular...

Failures Inspire Progress: Protecting Sensitive Buildings from Tunnelling
Tunnelling in urban areas is always a challenge, and it’s especially so when construction is proximate to densely populated districts. Such was the case on January 25, 2005, when a 10-m length of a Barcelona...

Automated Model And Parameter Selection: Incorporating Expert Input into Geotechnical Analyses
Excavation for construction of MIT Stata Center in Cambridge, MA. This complex soil-structure interaction problem required advanced numerical methods and soil constitutive models. A) PLAXIS 3D model of...

Originality Built In
The new Goethals Bridge linking New Jersey and New York is a twin cable-stayed crossing that incorporates an innovative cable-stayed anchor in its towers, which angle outward to keep melting ice off the...

Lava Tubes as Resilient Extraterrestrial Habitats: An Option For A Permanent Human Settlement Beyond Earth
The design, construction, and maintenance of safe and comfortable habitations are some of humankind’s oldest and most important activities. Millennia of experimentation and planning have led to earthly...

Design Criteria and Land - Use Practices: Is it Time to Consider Geo-Impacts of Wildfires?
Wildfires are extreme events with impacts that are notorious because of smartphone videos followed by news reports that feature sensational infrastructure damage and human suffering. The geo-impacts shown...

The Transcona Grain Elevator Failure Revisited: A Modern Perspective a Century Later
More than a century ago, a seminal event in the then world of foundation engineering took place in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, when the mat-foundation-supported Transcona Grain Elevator underwent catastrophic...

Designed for Durability
The Marc Basnight Bridge, completed in February, carries North Carolina Highway 12 over the Oregon Inlet, an area that is one of the most dynamic and dangerous inlets on the Atlantic Coast. At 2.8 mi long,...

Infrastructure Solutions: Schools Offer Resiliency
When natural disaster strike, public K-12 school buildings are often used as emergency shelters. Yet public school infrastructure received a D+ on ASCE’s 2017 Infrastructure Report Card. There are, however,...

Energy Star
The recently opened corporate headquarters of United Therapeutics is one of the largest net-zero energy office buildings in the world. Geo-exchange wells, an earth labyrinth, natural ventilation, and electrochromic...

Pumping Up Flood Defenses
Completed in April 2018, the $731-million Permanent Canal Closures and Pumps project represents the final component of the overall Hurricane and Storm Damage Risk Reduction System that serves the greater...

Infrastructure Solutions: Transit Transformation
Beset by long-term problems related to underinvestment and inadequate maintenance, the U.S. transit sector confronts challenges pertaining to funding, demographic changes, and an increasing array of new...

Solutions for Soft Soils
Because of highly permeable soils and high water tables, deep foundations and basements in southeast Florida have been virtually impossible, limiting the excavation depths in cities like Miami and leading...

Training for Disaster
The structural complexes used to train first responders must accommodate a wide range of theoretical and practical learning. From classroom spaces to built-to-burn assemblies to buildings within buildings,...

Delivering Olmsted Lock and Dam
The Olmsted Locks and Dam, the largest civil works project by the US Army Corps of Engineers since the Panama Canal, became operational in August 2018. More than 30 years in the making, the $3-billion...

Skinny 'Scrapers
Incredibly slender towers are rising around the globe into the skylines of major cities, especially New York City. Often targeted at the wealthy who are able to pay astronomical price for spectacular views,...

Bridging History
The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation recently rehabilitated the Frankford Avenue Bridge, also known as the Pennypack Creek Bridge. This stone-arch structure, originally built circa 1697, is the...

Mixed Foundations Resolve Complex Conditions
A 46-story residential tower currently under construction in downtown Boston abuts an existing parking garage, necessitating extreme care to ensure its stability amid tight space constraints. Part of the...

 

 

 

 

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