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    Hoist market lifts public works users

    Truck-mounted hoists account for a healthy portion of the American truck accessory market. According to Stephen Latin-Kasper, director of market data and research for the National Truck Equipment Association (NTEA), an estimated $75 million to $80 million worth of truck-mounted hoists were sold in...

     
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    Sewer systems inventoried

    The historic city of Alexandria, Va., is abandoning its outdated hard-copy utility maps in favor of up-to-date sanitary, storm, and combined sewer geographic information system (GIS) maps created in the field, in real time.

     
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    Engineering and environmental equilibrium

    River crossing restoration projects are happening all over the country. What many public works departments may not be aware of is that they are not the only entities interested in replacing the infrastructure. Projects like this represent a unique partnership opportunity among local entities...

     
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    Getting to the root of the issue

    A Gardena, Calif., company has come up with a solution that helps sidewalks and trees coexist peacefully.

     
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    PW Solutions and Products

    The latest products for public works.

     
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    Traffic safety and control equipment

    The latest in traffic control and safety equipment.

     
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    Vehicle Lifts

    The latest in vehicle maintenance lifts.

     
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    Grace under pressure

    Custom-made manhole risers stand the test of time and traffic.

     
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    Ramping up

    While cities are working to make sidewalks more accessible, many are learning that their curb ramps don't comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). This article, the second in a three-part series, discusses product options. Part three will cover real-world examples.

     
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    Phase II: Now what?

    Your municipality is in the midst of its first NPDES Phase II permit. What should you expect for the next one?

     
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    Heaping the benefits

    While farming out services like water treatment has become nearly as common as a new Starbucks, landfills are one area in which public ownership still dominates. According to the National Solid Wastes Management Association, two thirds of municipal solid waste (MSW) landfills remain in the hands of...

     
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    Ahead of the flow

    Hydraulic modeling is great for predicting potential system failures, but nothing beats data from the field. Building flow-monitoring services into the initial phases of a sewer project averts costly repairs down the road.

     
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    2006 Department of the Year

    Four cities earn top honors in our second annual Department of the Year award program. A jury of their peers says these departments raise the standard of excellence for themselves, their communities, and their profession.

     
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    The tyranny of technology

    Are we better off than previous generations, both personally and professionally? Technology is wonderful and invaluable, no doubt about that. But it doesn't come without its baggage.

     
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    Build it right

    The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) offers a report that lays out the types of construction materials used in the successful building and rehabilitating of bridges, as required by SAFETEA-LU.

     
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    Fostering future engineers

    The U.S. EPA has awarded $420,000 in grants to 42 student teams to research and develop sustainable environmental solutions.

     
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    Water treatment plant lauded

    Water treatment company Severn Trent Services has honored the Ralph Brennan Water Treatment Plant in Daytona Beach, Fla., for switching from gaseous chlorine disinfection to using onsite sodium hypochlorite-generating technology to disinfect water for the city's 100,000 residents.

     
  • Texas team wins water challenge

    For the second year in a row, the Water Environment Association of the Texas Trinity River Authority Central Regional Wastewater System (CReWSers) won the Operations Challenge at WEFTEC, an annual water-quality trade show.

     
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    Bye-bye, blue bags

    Windy City denizens were surprised when Mayor Richard Daley announced that, after more than a decade, the city would be abandoning the blue-bag recycling program.

     
  • News Briefs

    Brief news from the public works field.

     
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    Down & Dirty: The all-toilet edition

    Brief items about toilets.

     
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    From moo juice to mojo

    Milk: it does a body good. And, thanks to new ultra-clean electricity generation technology, it'll help out a California wastewater plant, too.

     
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    The more things change...

    Regardless of who's in the House, you're keeping your house in order.

     
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    PW at the Movies: Flushed Away

    PUBLIC WORKS goes to the movies to review new animated feature FLUSHED AWAY.

     
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    Crude crud creates a craze

    Kids are fascinated by gross things; they also dig learning how stuff works. Combining the two, San Diego created an ingenious program to teach youngsters all about the gross and groovy world of sewers.

     
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    Public Works: Solutions and Products

    The latest products for the Public Works field.

     
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    Products from the APWA show floor

    These products were among the many that caught our attention at APWA.

     
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    Billing Software

    The latest in public works billing software.

     
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    Leaf Collection Equipment

    The latest in leaf collection equipment.

     
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    Hustle and flow

    One example of effective traffic management comes from a high-profile project running through the heart of Boulder, Colo. The $8.9 million Broadway Street and Bridge Reconstruction Project involved total reconstruction of a four-lane arterial that carries 30,000 vehicles per day.

     
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    The greenhouse effect

    While many greenery-minded municipalities buy their bedding plants, shrubs, and other vegetation from private nurseries, some parks departments have found that maintaining a city greenhouse saves money, provides flexibility, and improves constituent relations.

     
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    Ramping up for compliance

    While cities are working to make sidewalks more accessible, many are learning that their curb ramps don't comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). This article, the first in a three-part series, explains what the law requires and why.

     
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    2006 Trendsetters

    From do-gooders to good-for-nothings, 50 people, places, and events that shaped, shocked, or otherwise rocked our world over the past year.

     
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    Staying up-to-date costly—but doable

    Instead of using manual, mechanical testing methods, today's cars, trucks, and heavy equipment require computerized troubleshooting, which is often expensive. However, Jake Stucky of Missoula, Montana, has found some cost-saving solutions.

     
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    Stewardship solutions

    One important tool in the management of e-waste is product stewardship: a management strategy where whoever designs, produces, sells, or uses a product takes responsibility for minimizing its environmental impact throughout all stages of its life cycle.

     
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    Design & Construction

    In September, the Greater Vancouver Regional District began working on the second of twin tunnels for its Seymour Capilano Drinking Water Filtration Project, using Robbins tunnel boring machines.

     
  • Schools study stormwater systems

    Two universities have joined forces to study how well stormwater best management practices (BMPs) address pollution, water quality, and sustainability.

     
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    Missouri launches safe bridges plan

    The Missouri DOT (MoDOT) has launched an ambitious bridge rehabilitation plan to repair and replace hundreds of troubled structures by 2012.

     
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    Flooded town washed off the map

    At the end of September, bulldozers razed the entire town of Elkport, Iowa, erasing 150 years of history. The demolition came two years after the town's 86 former residents endured severe flood damage and dawdling by federal agencies that were slow to open their relief checkbooks.

     
  • News Briefs

    Brief items from Public Works News.

     
  • Down and Dirty

    Stories from the sanitation and sewage front.

     
  • Bridge from hell goes boom

    Daniel Ruefly won an essay contest and got to be the person who flipped the switch and detonate a hated Washington, DC bridge.

     
  • Gender-bending fish found in potomac

    Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey pulled a bunch of male sea bass from the river and found they were producing eggs, something boy fish don't usually do.

     
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    Straddling the great divide

    There's often a big difference between what people think they're entitled to and what's appropriate, or even possible, for your department to provide. Examples of this disconnect abounded at the American Public Works Association's annual meeting in September.

     
  • PUBLIC WORKS SURVEY: Solid Waste Hauling

    In a September 2006 PUBLIC WORKS Survey, we aksed our readers about solid waste service in their municipalities.

     
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    Trash-talking man

    Dennis Hein is a third-generation trash man, following in the footsteps of his father and grandfather.

     
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    Web-based snow job

    A look at how Hamilton Township overhauled their snow response system.

     
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    A perfect circle

    Vance and her team at the Butler County Department of Environmental Services (BCDES) were set on starting up an environmental management system (EMS) in 2001, and nothing was going to stop them.

     
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    GIS Adds Curb Appeal

    The city of Austin developed a Pedestrian Master Plan to address compliance issues, using a custom GIS toolset called the Pedestrian Infrastructure Management System that scores sidewalks on ADA compliance, giving the city an efficient way to rank construction or maintenance needs.

     
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    Restoration transformation

    PUBLIC WORKS takes a close look at Iowa City's concrete pavement restoration (CPR) efforts, a finds them to be lasting and effective.

     
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    Trial run

    As part of its continuing effort to improve construction methods, CDOT is comparing the pros and cons of hot-mix asphalt (HMA) and portland cement concrete pavement (PCCP).

     
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    Ahead of the game

    Santa Barbara County is one such agency now reaping the rewards (and awards) from a pavement preservation program it launched six years ago.

     
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    PUBLIC WORKS Products

    The latest in sewer inspection, repair, and cleaning products

     
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    Sensing a solution

    The Water Distribution and Collection Division of the city's Department of Public Utilities has developed a flow monitoring program that provides snapshots of current conditions, letting them identify, isolate, and rehabilitate sections that aggravate the I/I problem.

     
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    Swamped in the Everglades

    Now that the Everglades's natural water flow has been altered to civilize Florida, civilization is attempting to alter the wetlands again, this time to save the Everglades.

     
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    Mission: possible

    Few public utilities look at the long-term “big picture.” Strategic plans look beyond those capital improvements and focus on other critical issues that a municipal utility must plan for. A strategic plan defines the mission of the utility and the issues that are critical to its success, and...

     
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    Scrutinizing your sewer

    Sewer utilities can improve performance and reverse the aging process by implementing buried infrastructure management (BIM), a systematic planning process that allows them to leverage resources to maximize the immediate and long-term benefits of every action.

     
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    Tight squeeze

    Membrane filtration isn't just for big cities. Two small water districts are using the decade-old technology to combat discharge requirements and prepare for growth.

     
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    The price of pollution

    Keeping up with federal water-pollution standards wasn't too onerous in the 1970s, when events like Earth Day made it politically expedient to turn on the federal spigot. But standards keep getting tougher.

     
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    Awards salute post-tensioning triumphs

    The Post-Tensioning Institute (PTI) has recognized a number of roads, bridges, and other construction projects with its 2006 PTI Awards.

     
  • Corps adopts drainage standards

    The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has adopted new guidelines requiring that all precast concrete used in drainage structures come from plants certified by the National Precast Concrete Association.

     
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    Dam good flood prevention

    A new dam in Wise County, Va., makes use of roller-compacted concrete (RCC) as a flood-fighting structure.

     
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    Hurting for dirt?

    At Xtradirt.com, city managers can post ads calling for someone to take surplus fill dirt, sand, gravel, recycled concrete, and asphalt off their hands, or post a call for needed material.

     
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    PUBLIC WORKS BRIEFS

    News and events from the Public Works field.

     
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    Water well done

    The 2006 Competitiveness Awards, bestowed by the Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies (AMWA, applauds water systems that get their job done brilliantly.

     
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    How well can you juggle?

    Managing rapid expansion requires a unique skill set. But so does meeting the needs of communities that don't lie in the path of growth. When budgets decline, your customers expect the same level of service.

     
  • SURVEY: Data on Municipal Pools

    The results from PUBLIC WORKS' August survey, concerning municipal pools.

     
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    Trail Mix

    Robert Amme's goal is to turn the nation's tire stockpiles into inexpensive paving materials.

     
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    APWA product round-up

    The latest products from APWA.

     
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    Screenings become a piece of cake

    The Meriden, Conn., Water Pollution Control Facility has reduced organic content and waste volume with the Screenings Washer Monster, a device that grinds, washes, compacts, and dewaters bar screenings. Since installing the device, the facility has eliminated odor, handling of screenings, and...

     
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    Future perfect

    raditionally, developers have built and paid for improvements via permits issued by a city. While permitting works well for low- to moderate-growth areas, it has definite deficiencies. PUBLIC WORKS examines some strategies for overcoming the roadblocks.

     
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    Fast-tracking the future

    When Kansas City's urban core needed a jumpstart, city officials broke through the backlog by launching the Capital Improvements Management Office.

     
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    Post-party pickup

    Take a page from these cities' playbooks to learn how to craft and execute an effective cleanup plan.

     
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    Walking the line

    Many public agencies have created effective procedures to curb new encroachments onto rights of way. But there remains a larger issue: What to do about existing encroachments that may have been in violation for years, or even decades?

     
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    A bird's eye view

    Alone, aerial images won't make your road maintenance team work faster or your sewer mains stop backing up. But when combined with a geographic information system (GIS), accurate data collection, and sound asset-management practices, they can enhance communication internally and with constituents.

     
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    To lease or not to lease

    PUBLIC WORKS elucidates ample reasons to forego the option of leasing.

     
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    Blanket protection

    When landslides took out an important Montana road--crucial to the tourist economy--the collective effort of MDOT crews and their consultants and contractors proved to be a success.

     
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    Should you ditch the dig?

    Although trenchless technology can be more cost-effective, environmentally friendly, and safer than traditional exhume-and-replace construction, it's still not universally embraced. But that is changing.

     
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    Top Leaders

    PUBLIC WORKS highlights the APWA Top Ten Public Works Leaders.

     
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    Public-private challenges—and solutions

    Alan Gesford, a former public works director for several Pennsylvania municipalities, shares the experiences that informed his view on the public works production.

     
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    Built to last

    The Concrete Reinforcing Steel Institute (CRSI) has announced the winners of its 18th biennial Design Awards Competition. Winners were judged on four criteria: satisfaction of the owner's objectives, effective planning, innovation to meet project goals, and full exploitation of the benefits of...

     
  • Awarding solid waste superstars

    The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) will recognize the winners of its 2006 Excellence Awards at WasteCon 2006, Sept. 21, Charlotte, N.C. The awards honor management facilities, operations, and programs.

     
  • Taking the blame

    Residents of Fire Island, N.Y., experienced a three-day drinking water emergency after a water authority employee took tainted water samples.

     
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    APWA receives grant for venture with forestry groups

    The American Public Works Association (APWA) received a $130,000 federal cost-share grant from the USDA Forest Service to fund an outreach program that aims to help public works departments improve tree care projects.

     
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    City's energy plan is a gas

    One Canadian city is harnessing its current resources to create a new source of energy and revenue.

     
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    Cities reward water conservation

    To combat water shortages, many cities are creating and expanding programs that give residents and businesses rebates or utility-bill credits for conserving water.

     
  • PUBLIC WORKS BRIEFS

    News in brief from the Public Works field.

     
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    Never say never

    Among the plethora of federal initiatives that affect public works leaders is the National Incident Management System. With all the other rules and regulations competing for your attention, why should you give this priority?

     
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    Coming home

    A profile of Victor Ramirez, director of engineering and building/city engineer in Crystal Lake, Illinois

     
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    Heavy and mid-sized equipment

    The latest in loaders and excavators.

     
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    Selecting a vehicle-mounted generator

    On-board power in public works fleets is increasing due to the need for lighting and computerized equipment. Here are some ways to get that boost when you need it.

     
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    APWA Expo Preview: water and wastewater

    A preview of APWA events related to water and wastewater.

     
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    APWA Expo Preview: stormwater and erosion control

    A preview of APWA events related to stormwater and erosion control.

     
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    APWA Expo Preview: leadership and management

    A preview of APWA events related to leadership and management.

     
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    APWA Expo Preview: equipment and technology

    A preview of APWA events related to equipment and technology.

     
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    APWA Expo Preview: building and facilities management

    A preview of APWA events related to building and facilities management.

     
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    APWA Expo Preview: engineering and design

    A preview of APWA events related to engineering and design.

     
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    APWA Expo Preview: solid waste

    A preview of APWA events related to solid waste.

     
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    APWA Expo Preview: parks and grounds

    A preview of APWA events related to parks and grounds.

     
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    APWA Expo Preview: fleets and trucks

    A preview of APWA events related to fleets and trucks.