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    Little water warriors

    After the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, water department managers became keenly aware of their facilities' vulnerability. Since then, they have put in place a range of measures, from physical features protecting buildings to tests that detect the presence of toxins in their water supply. Now, in large...

     
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    Snow and ice control

    The V-Maxx 8500 bulk spreader is a V-box unit with a capacity of 2 cubic yards. Designed for use with pickups having beds 8 feet or longer, the product has a multi-angle hopper, inverted V salt/sand baffle, and attached vibrator to allow for continuous material flow. The hopper is made of...

     
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    Riding the rail

    A 60-inch-diameter, welded-steel pipe typically is not the type of utility buried 19 feet under the road median at the end of your driveway. It's the creation of the Point of the Mountain Aqueduct (POMA), a job that involves installation of 68,500 linear feet of a new drinking water pipeline that...

     
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    Sliplining installed without a hiccup

    After years of watching contractors install centrifugally cast, fiberglass-reinforced, polymer mortar (CCFRPM) pipes in trenchless projects, the San Antonio Water System (SAWS) decided to do some installing themselves.

     
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    Field of dreams

    A blind girl now believes she can go to college because she can hit a ball. A boy confined to a wheelchair can play like his older brother. A dad fulfills his dream of coaching his son's team. This can-do attitude comes from adaptive baseball fields and leagues.

     
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    Biting back

    Winter and early spring are ideal times to evaluate past mosquito control efforts, or to develop or fine-tune a program. Mosquitoes ruin outdoor activities and chase away potential revenue; they also carry life-threatening diseases.

     
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    Down to a science

    Future permit limits are a genuine concern for those in wastewater treatment—especially total nitrogen (TN) limits. Most forecasters predict TN limits will be cut from the current 5 to 10 mg/L range down to somewhere around 3 mg/L. However, TN removal is not new; development of treatment systems...

     
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    Keep the customer satisfied

    Public works departments spend considerable resources handling requests from constituents—answering questions, fulfilling service orders, resolving complaints. To streamline the process, more and more agencies are implementing sophisticated customer relationship management (CRM) systems to process...

     
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    Building the budgeting process

    As in many cities, Houston's equipment replacement process is far from ideal. The city has an equipment acquisition fund of $22 million for fiscal year 2006, but funding levels go up and down yearly, according to the availability of money. So monies available don't always match up with needs.

     
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    Are your rates correct?

    At last week's city commission meeting, the mayor and several River City commissioners grilled you on the city's rising costs of providing solid waste collection service. Why wasn't the city able to track its costs more closely? Were costs in line with similar cities providing the same service...

     
  • Choosing between asphalt and concrete pavement

    Hard-surfaced pavements, which make up about 60% of U.S. roads, typically are constructed with either hot-mix asphalt or portland cement concrete (commonly referred to as “asphalt” and “concrete,” respectively). Of those roads, more than 90% are asphalt.

     
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    Asphalt versus concrete

    The debate goes on: Which is better, concrete or asphalt? While there is no cut-and-dried answer, a smart public works official will consider the following questions before selecting a material for the next road project: Which pavement option is better for my specific application?

     
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    Picking the perfect pipe

    It would be nice if specifying pipe were as simple as buying a pair of shoes—walk into a store to pick out the style you like and take it home.

     
  • What is your title?

    2006 salary survey: How much are you worth?

    No one ever complains about getting paid too much. But how does your salary really stack up against that of your peers? PUBLIC WORKS magazine wanted to find out. Based on answers from 2600 readers just like you, we have a snapshot of how much money public works managers make.

     
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    Understanding contract documents

    The American Society of Civil Engineers' (ASCE) 2005 Report Card for America's Infrastructure gave the nation a cumulative grade of “D” based on the condition of several public works categories.

     
  • Letters to the editor

     
  • Wastewater facility garners award

     
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    Atlanta opens wastewater tunnel

     
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    EPA ‘Climate Leaders’ program expands

     
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    New York City constructs third water tunnel

     
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    Highway construction costs soar

    The cost of highway construction materials has increased by 22% in the past two years, according to a recent association analysis.

     
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    Maine highway marks design-build achievement

     
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    Portland named America's cleanest city

    According to a recent survey, residents of Portland, Ore., live in the cleanest city in the United States.

     
  • PUBLIC WORKS Briefs

     
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    Wild ideas

    When the highway bill (SAFETEA-LU) finally passed last summer, some believed—perhaps naively—the federal government was at last providing sufficient funding for America's highways. That, unfortunately, was not the case. The American Road and Transportation Builders Association's analysis states...