For August 2005
Jaster-Quintanilla (JQ), a consulting engineering firm based in Austin, Texas, offering structural and civil engineering, recently announced the opening of its fourth location in Houston-other offices are in San Antonio and Dallas. Gabriel Garza, P.E., and Anthony McLain, P.E., both formerly with Walter P. Moore, lead the Houston office and have been named Associates with […]
The ball is in our court
Do we know enough to change the building code and should those changes apply to all buildings, or just to tall buildings or buildings considered high profile targets? Weve got to reach a consensus on those questions, and we most certainly need further research on some of the key issues raised in this report.
Building information modeling
China, it seems, is one giant construction project. And like all giants, it has a large appetite — in this case, for construction materials. Half a world away, Chinas consumption of raw materials has created indigestion for American architects and structural engineers, forcing them to struggle with the spiraling cost and availability of structural steel and concrete for their projects. With each change in the price of materials — sometimes weekly — project costs escalate, necessitating a constant process of redesign as teams strive to hit construction budget targets. And with each such cycle, you can hear the cry of the structural engineers, asked once again to reduce the cost of the work: Not again!Of course, Chinas effect on steel prices is hardly the only challenge structural engineers face on projects large and small. And in most of those projects, the cost and associated tedium of these changes are skewed to the later stages of a project, as the architects and developers become better acquainted with the engineering issues.
Letters to the Editor
More team membersI am the project manager for the Parsons design team on the Woodrow Wilson Bridge project and I read with great interest the article that was published in June in your magazine. While Im sure that this article was of great interest to many of your readers, there are certain facts that were […]
Zinc-epoxy coating systemSherwin-Williams Industrial and Marine Coatings group offers a Class-B rated, zinc-epoxy coating system for structural and support steel. The system, which meets slip coefficient performance standards for bolted connections according to ASTM and AISC specifications, consists of the companys Zinc Clad II Plus coating and Steel-Spec Epoxy Primer topcoat. Zinc Clad II Plus […]
Project Case Study: Tracking structural stability
When completed this fall, the Reno Transportation Rail Access Corridor (ReTRAC) project will ease traffic congestion and beautify downtown Reno, Nev., by sinking 2 miles of on-grade rail lines into a 33-foot-deep trench. Among the project’s challenges is how to avoid undermining the foundations of existing structures-some of them historic buildings.
News from the United Kingdom
On July 4, while most of us took a holiday and celebrated our independence from Great Britain, Antony Oliver, a British peer, who is the editor of New Civil Engineer, a weekly independent magazine read by the 56,000 European members of the Institution of Civil Engineers, was busy answering my questions about the state of civil engineering in the United Kingdom (U.K.).
Sustainability and beyond
Following two successful, events in Baltimore, the Land Development Conference & Expo moves west this fall. On Nov. 2-4, 2005, civil engineers, developers, landscape architects, planners, government officials, environmental specialists, suppliers and others will gather at the Caleo Resort in Scottsdale, Ariz., to discuss national and regional land development technology, trends, and case studies, as well as business and management issues. Not surprisingly, the hot topic of sustainability will be at the core of many presentations and exhibits.
Flexible leachfield chambersInfiltrator Systems Quick4 Standard and Equalizer Chambers feature installation flexibility, contouring capability, and multiple piping options. The product is designed for curved and straight systems for all leachfield applications. A Contour Swivel Connection provides a 10- to 15-degree right or left turning capability of the assembled chambers to follow land contours or form […]
Medical insurance is of utmost importance to employees of civil engineering firms, according to research conducted by the Engineering Business Institute (EBI). Only a high quality company culture ranked more important (culture included ethical business practices, high quality work for clients, company pride and morale, positive relationships, and job security).