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Public Works Projects of the Year! and the Annual Transportation Issue

Lamb Boulevard Improvement Project City of North Las Vegas


Program Managers Construction Managers Civil Engineers Architects Municipal Managers

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July 2008 Vol. 75, No. 7 The APWA Reporter, the official magazine of the American Public Works Association, covers all facets of public works for APWA members including industry news, legislative actions, management issues and emerging technologies.


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President’s Message Candidates for the 2008-2009 APWA Board of Directors named National Public Works Week celebrated on Capitol Hill Technical Committee News More than 40 professionals earn APWA Fleet Certification New Orleans in pictures Is there a light under your bushel worth sharing? The Diversity Exemplary Practices Award APWA Book Review

APWA proudly announces the 2008 Public Works Projects of the Year


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Washington Insight Recipes for Success International Idea Exchange Ask Ann


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42 47 48 50 54 56 58 60 62 66

Cracks in the nation’s bridge system? APWA proposes funding and financing recommendations for next Surface Transportation Authorization Funding alternatives for transportation projects APWA goes green! Public-Private Partnership on a Local Level Research pays off for transportation Don’t miss out: Cost-effective training and technical assistance available—and help for your chapter, too Partnering plus “Three E’s” equals recycling success Safe Routes to School Report Update Toward Zero Deaths in Minnesota Wayne County, Michigan adopts state-of-the-art roads management system Energy efficiency arrives at the Pittsburgh tunnels



WorkZone: Your Connection to Public Works Careers


92 94

Products in the News Professional Directory



33 96

Education Calendar World of Public Works Calendar


Index of Advertisers

On the cover: the Half Moone Cruise and Celebration Center, one of APWA’s Projects of the Year (photo by John Wadsworth)

July 2008

APWA Reporter


Keeping us moving Our legacy to the future is linked by public works professionals Larry W. Frevert, P.E. APWA President t the risk of eliciting loud groans and rolling of eyes, let me say that I hope you find this issue of the Reporter, our annual focus on transportation, moving. But seriously now… As developers and operators of a large share of our transportation system, public works professionals are responsible for an important asset, a cumulative investment we and our forebears have made over the course of centuries. Like our house, the family farm, or a trust fund set up by a wealthy grandparent, we get benefits from using the asset, but we want to preserve it, maybe even increase its value, to pass on to our children. We probably all know of people who— through mismanagement, misfortune or simply neglect—have squandered their legacy. The asset itself—roads, transit systems, ports, airports and more— touches all parts of our lives and underlies our prosperity. My food and clothing routinely arrive at our local stores after long trips. My children traveled home from the hospital when they were born, and my remains will certainly be transported when I am gone. The articles in this issue of the Reporter highlight some of the challenges we currently face, trying to manage the system. Major portions of the highway system have aged and need refurbishing (the Interstate recently had its 50th birthday) and we have new technology that can improve system performance— think smart traffic signals that can reset their own timing to improve traffic flow and GPS air traffic control systems to accommodate more 4

APWA Reporter

July 2008

aircraft take-offs and landings. The general public tends to not only take for granted our transportation infrastructure; they take for granted its condition. Unfortunately, it seems to take the collapse of a bridge or some other fatal disaster to attract the public’s attention to the need to maintain transportation facilities. At the same time that the needs for major renovation have been growing, the mechanisms we have devised to pay for the system have come under increasing pressure. The federal and many state gas taxes have not increased in more than a decade, while costs of construction and maintenance have spiraled higher. Rising petroleum prices and growing concerns about global climate change and other environmental consequences of our lifestyles promise to curtail further the funds collected to support transportation. As public works professionals, we have a responsibility to encourage citizens to seek transportation that is less dependent on our diminished energy supplies. In the case of automobiles this means more fuel-efficient vehicles which, under the current fuel taxing method, reduce revenue for streets, roads and bridges yet do not reduce the demand for pavements and structures. I personally believe the days of funding our surface transportation system as we have traditionally done so are numbered. Our profession must be in the lead in helping set the course for future transportation funding methods, potentially such as vehicle mileage taxing. The entire federal transportation program is up for grabs, in fact, as

Official Magazine of the American Public Works Association PUBLISHER American Public Works Association 2345 Grand Blvd., Suite #700 Kansas City, MO 64108-2625 (800) 848-APWA (Member Services Hotline) (816) 472-6100 (Kansas City metro area) FAX (816) 472-1610 e-mail: Website: EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Peter B. King EDITOR R. Kevin Clark GRAPHIC DESIGNER Julie Smith ADVERTISING SALES Amanda Daniel R. Kevin Clark Erin Ladd Kansas City Liaison Jennifer Wirz (800) 848-APWA (800) 800-0341 APWA WASHINGTON OFFICE 1401 K. Street NW, 11th floor Washington, D.C. 20005 (202) 408-9541 FAX (202) 408-9542 Disclaimer: The American Public Works Association assumes no responsibility for statements and/or opinions advanced by either editorial or advertising contributors to this issue. APWA reserves the right to refuse to publish and to edit manuscripts to conform to the APWA Reporter standards. Publisher’s Notice: The APWA Reporter, July 2008, Vol. 75, No. 7 (ISSN 0092-4873; Publications Agreement No. 40040340). The APWA Reporter is published monthly by the American Public Works Association, 2345 Grand Boulevard, Suite 700, Kansas City, MO 64108-2625. Subscription rate is $155 for nonmembers and $25 for chapter-sponsored students. Periodicals postage paid at Kansas City, MO and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to the APWA Reporter, 2345 Grand Boulevard, #700, Kansas City, MO 64108-2625. Canada returns to: Station A, P.O. Box 54, Windsor, ON N9A 6J5. Reprints and Permissions: Information is available at © 2008 by American Public Works Association Address Change? To alert us of a change to your membership record, contact an APWA Membership Specialist at (800) 848-APWA or The APWA Reporter is printed by Harmony Printing & Development Co., Liberty, MO.

the Congress debates new legislation. Recent experience—years late reaching an agreement on SAFETEA-LU and much of the funding tied up with earmarks—gives little hope that life will get easier for public works people. It is encouraging that our SAFETEA-LU Reauthorization Task Force has been active for some time and I want to recognize their efforts led by Chair John German and our most recent At-Large Board of Directors Member John Okamoto, along with Kathleen Davis, Bill Reichmuth, Debra Hale, Lowell Patterson and Mark Macy, who along with APWA Staff Member Jim Fahey have provided recommendations to Congress and others on the importance of timely renewal of the federal transportation legislation. Thanks also to Past President Bill Verkest for his testimony last year before the congressionallymandated National Surface Transportation Policy and Revenue Study Commission which allowed APWA to go on record on behalf of timely renewal and modernizing of this legislation. Our responsibilities are just beginning when we discuss funding needs for streets, roads and bridges. Fortunately, with approval of AIR-21 last year, op-

portunities are provided for air transport improvements but great needs still exist with regards to waterways, rail transport (both passenger and freight) and urban systems such as light rail, commuter rail, streetcars and buses. APWA is working to deal with these issues, but we need to do more. I personally believe we have for too long taken the “back seat” when it comes to legislative advocacy. For that reason, a Chapter Advocacy Task Force was appointed for the express purpose of first identifying if greater public infrastructure advocacy is needed and, if so, to provide our membership with the tools to be better advocates. Under the leadership of Chair Jim Coppola, task force members Ron Calkins, Timothy Kant, Richard Ridings, Douglas Fredericks, Daryl Grigsby, David Lawry, Joel Riggs and Ric Robertshaw presented a recommendation to the Government Affairs Committee during an April meeting in Washington, D.C. The task force recommended that more effective local government advocacy is needed and that a “toolbox” must be developed to help our membership with this mission.

Every APWA member can play a part by helping our elected officials and our neighbors to understand that our transportation system is a valuable legacy that needs care if it is to serve us well. If we all work together, we can keep our nations moving. Be watching for this “toolbox” to help you with your efforts. As I said in my opening remarks at the San Antonio Congress last September, we have inherited wonderful infrastructures from those who came before us. Now it’s “Our Turn,” its “Our Watch,” how well we care for what we have and improve upon it will be judged by our children and grandchildren. We must not fail them; the time is now to take action! I have said it before and will continue to say it, “There is no one I would better trust to make this commitment and to make the world better for those who will come after us than public works professionals.” Thank you for all you do daily for the public works profession and for APWA.


Mission Statement: The American Public Works Association serves its members by promoting professional excellence and public awareness through education, advocacy and the exchange of knowledge. BOARD OF DIRECTORS PRESIDENT Larry W. Frevert, P.E. National Program Director/ Public Works HDR Engineering, Inc. Kansas City, MO

ADVISORY COUNCIL DIRECTOR, REGION IV Shelby P. LaSalle, Jr. Chairman and CEO Krebs, LaSalle, LeMieux Consultants, Inc. Metairie, LA

PRESIDENT-ELECT Noel C. Thompson Consultant Thompson Resources Louisville, KY

DIRECTOR, REGION V Larry T. Koehle, P.Eng. Vice President, Infrastructure ASI Technologies, Inc. Brampton, ON

PAST PRESIDENT William A. Verkest, P.E. Texas Municipal Program Manager HDR Engineering, Inc. Arlington, TX

DIRECTOR, REGION VI Larry Stevens, P.E. SUDAS Director Iowa State University Ames, IA

DIRECTOR, REGION I Jean-Guy Courtemanche Business Development Lumec, Inc. Boisbriand, QC

DIRECTOR, REGION VII R. LeRoy Givens, P.E. Vice President & Senior Project Manager Bohannan Huston, Inc. Corrales, NM

DIRECTOR, REGION II Ed Gottko, P.E. Town Administrator (retired) Town of Westfield, NJ

DIRECTOR, REGION VIII Ann Burnett-Troisi Governmental Liaison for Pacific Bell (retired) San Diego, CA

DIRECTOR, REGION III Elizabeth Treadway Vice President AMEC Earth & Environmental Greensboro, NC

DIRECTOR-AT-LARGE, ENGINEERING & TECHNOLOGY Patty Hilderbrand, P.E. Program Management & Development Manager City of Kansas City, MO

(Past APWA Presidents) William A. Verkest, Chair Robert Albee

Erwin F. Hensch

Michael R. Pender

Roger K. Brown

Robert S. Hopson

Richard L. Ridings

DIRECTOR-AT-LARGE, ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT George Crombie Secretary of Natural Resources State of Vermont Waterbury, VT

Myron D. Calkins

Ronald W. Jensen

John J. Roark

Joseph F. Casazza

Dwayne Kalynchuk

Harold E. Smith

Nick W. Diakiw

Martin J. Manning

June Rosentreter Spence

Robert C. Esterbrooks

James L. Martin

Tom Trice

DIRECTOR-AT-LARGE, FLEET & FACILITIES MANAGEMENT Ken A. Nerland Director, General Services Dept. City of Fresno, CA

Jerry M. Fay

James J. McDonough

Win Westfall

Bob Freudenthal

Robert Miller

Carl D. Wills

Herbert A. Goetsch

Lambert C. Mims

J. Geoffrey Greenough

Judith M. Mueller

Ken Haag

Ronald L. Norris

DIRECTOR-AT-LARGE, PUBLIC WORKS MGMT./LEADERSHIP Diane Linderman, P.E. Director, Urban Infrastructure and Development VHB, Inc. Richmond, VA

DIRECTOR, REGION IX Doug Drever Manager of Strategic Services City of Saskatoon, SK

Executive Director Peter B. King Executive Director Emeritus Robert D. Bugher Editorial Advisory Board Myron D. Calkins

Neil S. Grigg

Stephen J. O Neill

Gordon R. Garner

Susan M. Hann

Kyle E. Schilling

July 2008

APWA Reporter


APWA hosts 2008 Public Works Policy Forum Reps. Oberstar and Blumenauer discuss infrastructure legislation Becky Wickstrom, Manager of Media Affairs, and Maggie Doucette, Government Affairs Associate, American Public Works Association, Washington, D.C.

n April, during a two-day inaugural Public Works Policy Forum, 32 APWA members met with policy makers and members of Congress to discuss the power of infrastructure to stimulate the economy, the need for increased investment in water and wastewater as well as full funding for the federal Pre-Disaster Mitigation Program and increased investment in the deteriorating transportation network.

Blumenauer asked APWA members to review his Trust Fund proposal and discuss it with their congressional leaders. He encouraged APWA’s 64 chapters to take part in a national conversation about the federal role in infrastructure investment through broad-based, non-partisan forums. Legislation is expected to be introduced in the coming months.

Public Works Policy Forum 2008 Building An Infrastructure Agenda For The Future

“We need your help to change the rhetoric here in Washington, D.C.,” said Blumenauer. “Let’s get started now and let’s do it in a way that’s not only bipartisan, but also nonpartisan. We’ve got some work to do!”

Policy Forum participants also championed APWA priorities during more than 65 individual meetings with congressional leaders, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), House Transportation and Infrastructure (T&I) Committee Chair James Oberstar (D-MN), Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chair Barbara Boxer (D-CA), and Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR), Chair of the Highways and Transit Subcommittee. During the Forum, Oberstar joined APWA members for breakfast on Capitol Hill to discuss current infrastructure conditions and legislation. Comparing his recent hip replacement surgery to the state of the nation’s infrastructure, Oberstar lamented, “It hurt like hell and it needed replacement.” Oberstar stressed the importance of infrastructure investment and cited the work of the T&I Committee towards meeting that goal—710 witnesses testified during hearings, and 76 bills drafted, 48 of which became law, within the last year. He also outlined pending initiatives including plans for a water resources bill and funding for highway transportation under SAFETEA-LU. “Infrastructure investment must be a priority,” he said. “The choice for the future is to either invest in infrastructure or fall behind.” Also among the Forum speakers was Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), who discussed his vision for a Water Trust Fund. “We are in the midst of losing the challenge of infrastructure investment,” said Blumenauer. “As far as I can tell, we are spending less on infrastructure than ever before. It’s time for us to take a deep breath, step back and develop an infrastructure plan for our century.”


APWA Reporter

July 2008

At the 2008 Public Works Policy Forum were (from left to right) APWA President Larry Frevert, Government Affairs Committee member Joel Schilling, Rep. James Oberstar, and APWA Past President and Government Affairs Committee Chair Bob Freudenthal.

Forum sessions included discussions about the outlook for the 2008 elections, what makes a successful congressional meeting and updates on the National Surface Transportation Policy and Revenue Study Commission Report as well as development of a five-year strategic plan by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Becky Wickstrom can be reached at (202) 218-6736 or; Maggie Doucette can be reached at (202) 218-6712 or



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Candidates for the 2008-2009 APWA Board of Directors named

ive nominees are slated for election to the 2008-2009 APWA Board of Directors. Two candidates selected by the National Nominating Committee include Larry T. Koehle, P.Eng., Vice President, Infrastructure, ASI Technologies, Inc., Brampton, Ontario, for President-Elect; and Kenneth A. Nerland, Director, General Services Department, City of Fresno, California, for Director-at-Large, Fleet and Facilities. The Director-at-Large, Transportation candidate has not been nominated by the National Nominating Committee as the July issue goes to press; please see the APWA website for a list of all nominations. Three candidates nominated by regional nominating committees as directors include Jean-Guy Courtemanche, Business Development, Lumec, Boisbriand, Québec, for Director, Region I; Elizabeth Treadway, Vice President, AMEC Earth & Environmental, Greensboro, North Carolina, for Director, Region III; and Jimmy B. Foster, P.E., Director of Public Works, City of Plano, Texas, for Director, Region VII. This year’s National Nominating Committee was comprised of the chair, Past President Bob Freudenthal, Executive Director, Tennessee Association of Utility Districts, Murfreesboro, Tennessee; Past President Bill Verkest, P.E., Texas Municipal Program Manager, HDR Engineering, Arlington, Texas; Sharyn Fox, Municipal Program Manager, Whitman Requardt and Associates LLP, Newport News, Virginia; Kevin Hill, General Services Manager, City of Henderson, Nevada; James Nichols, P.E., Deputy City Manager, City of Goodyear, Arizona; Carl Quiram, P.E., Director of Public Works, Town of Goffstown, New Hampshire; Joel Schilling, Water Resources Scientist, Schilling Consultant Services, Mahtomedi, Minnesota; Sherman Smith, P.E., Public Works Director, Pulaski County, Arkansas; Ian Vaughan, Operations Manager, Vancouver Island, CORIX Utilities, Victoria, British Columbia; Harry Weed, Superintendent of Public Works, Village of Rockville Centre, New York; and Richard Berning, Director of Public Works (retired), Springfield, Illinois. The three regional nominating committees were comprised of members selected by the respective chapters in the region.

Larry T. Koehle, P.Eng. President-Elect Larry T. Koehle has had nearly 40 years of public works service including serving as the Commissioner of Public Works for the City 8

APWA Reporter

July 2008

of Brampton, Ontario, from which he retired in 2000. In his present position as Vice President, Infrastructure with ASI Technologies, an information technology professional services firm, he assures public sector clients are provided with important technologies enabling better decisions with respect to their investments in municipal infrastructure. Koehle has been a member of APWA for 34 years serving as the Ontario Chapter President, Chapter Delegate, and Chair of the House of Delegates. At the national level he has served on the Nominating Committee (1998-99), Awards Committee (1997-2001), Audit Committee (2005-06), House of Delegates Executive Committee (Chair, 1999-2000) and the Finance Committee (Chair, 2007-08). Koehle is a recipient of the Ontario Chapter’s Long Service Award for his 30 years of significant service to the chapter. He is completing the second year of his second term as Director, Region V.

Kenneth A. Nerland Director-at-Large Fleet and Facilities Kenneth A. Nerland has served as the General Services Director for the City of Fresno, California for the past seven years and as its Fleet Manager for fifteen years prior to that. His accomplishments include several significant clean air energy-efficient fleet and facilities projects which have been recognized with national awards and were made possible through his leadership in aggressively pursuing grant funding. Nerland was the Central California Chapter’s President in 1998 and served the chapter as its Delegate for nine years. At the national level he has been a member of the Fleet Services Committee (1996-97), Facilities, Grounds & Fleet Operations Committee (1997-2001), Audit Committee (2007-08) and Government Affairs Committee (2007-08). He served as the Founding Chair of the San Joaquin Valley Clean Cities Coalition (1994-97). Ken is completing his first term as Director-atLarge, Fleet and Facilities.

Jean-Guy Courtemanche Director, Region I The nominee for Director of Region I, JeanGuy Courtemanche, is responsible for business development at Lumec in Boisbriand, Québec. He is also Vice President with Le Group Courtemanche, Repentigny, Québec,

which sells products for traffic innovations, Precision 2000 and Genesis. He has been very active in APWA and CPWA (Canadian Public Works Association) for a number of years, including serving as a member of the CPWA Board of Directors for five years (2001-05). He is also a Past President of the Québec Chapter and was the Chapter Delegate for 10 years (1996-2005). Courtemanche has been a member of the International Affairs Committee (1998-2000) and was the North American Snow Conference Host Committee Chair when the conference was held in Québec City in 2003. He is completing his first term as Director of Region I.

YOUR VOTE IN APWA DOES COUNT As an APWA member, you will have the opportunity to vote for members of the APWA Board of Directors until July 25, 2008 when the ballot will close: •

APWA President-Elect

Two Directors-at-Large in the functional areas of Transportation and Fleet & Facilities (the Directorat-Large, Transportation candidate has not been nominated by the National Nominating Committee as the July issue goes to press; please see the APWA website for a list of all nominations)

Regions I, III and VII Regional Directors (by APWA members in those respective regions only)

Elizabeth Treadway Director, Region III Elizabeth Treadway is Vice President with AMEC Earth & Environmental, Greensboro, North Carolina, and has been with the firm for eight years. She has been actively involved in APWA since 1986 at both the chapter and national levels. She currently serves as Director of Region III, appointed by the Board of Directors in 2007 to fill the vacancy created by the election of Noel Thompson as President-Elect. In addition to having been the North Carolina Chapter’s President, she has been the chapter’s committee chair for the Administrative, Audit, Budget, Education and Training, Nominating, State Government Affairs, and PACE Committees. At the national level, she has been a member of the Water Resources Management Committee (1996-98), Government Affairs Committee (1998-2000), and Congress Planning Committee (1995-97). Treadway was named one of APWA’s Top Ten Public Works Leaders of the Year in 1997. She is completing her first term as Director of Region III.

The ballot will be available for online voting until July 25 on the “Members Only” section of the APWA website. There will also be a voting icon on the home page of our website. If you do not have access to a computer at home or work, you should be able to access the APWA website online at your local public library. You may request a paper ballot from Kaye Sullivan at (800) 848-APWA (2792), extension 5233, if you cannot vote online. Additional reminders of the voting process were sent through the infoNOW Communities and through an e-mail or fax to every member. If you have questions, please contact Kaye Sullivan, APWA Deputy Executive Director, at ksullivan@apwa. net or (800) 848-APWA (2792).

Jimmy B. Foster, P.E. Director, Region VII Jimmy B. Foster, P.E., is the Director of Public Works for the City of Plano, Texas. He began his career in international service in 1980 with his work as a community development consultant in Burkina Faso, West Africa. He has visited and worked in 57 countries, advising overseas personnel regarding humanitarian projects and assisting in the development of disaster relief plans around the world. Foster has served the Texas Chapter as the Chapter Delegate (2002-07) and as the current President-Elect and Awards Committee Chair. He is a current member of the national Diversity Committee and Government Affairs Committee, was a member of the Finance Committee (2004-06), and served as Chair of the International Affairs Committee (2003-04) and Chair of the House of Delegates (2006-07). He was named one of APWA’s Top Ten Public Works Leaders of the Year in 2005 and received APWA’s International Service Award in 2007.

At a special ceremony at the Colorado State Capitol on May 1, Governor Bill Ritter signed a proclamation declaring May 18-24 National Public Works Week in Colorado. In attendance were APWA National President Larry Frevert, Colorado Chapter President Suzanne Moore and Colorado Chapter Past President David Frazier. From left to right: David Frazier, President Frevert, Suzanne Moore and Governor Ritter (photo by Don Ludwig, publisher, Colorado Public Works Journal)

July 2008

APWA Reporter


National Public Works Week celebrated on Capitol Hill Becky Wickstrom Media Affairs Manager American Public Works Association Washington, D.C. n May, APWA members, congressional leaders and friends of public works celebrated National Public Works Week on Capitol Hill. APWA President Larry Frevert, PresidentElect Noel Thompson and Past-President Bill Verkest participated in a reception honoring House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee (T&I) Chairman James L. Oberstar (D-MN) and Ranking Member John Mica (R-FL) for their dedicated service, leadership and support for America’s public infrastructure.

paid tribute to the work of both Congressmen on behalf of public works. “We join in thanking our leaders for their support for our water resources and the environment, our drinking water and clean water infrastructure, our transportation systems and a stronger emergency response, and all the contributions they have made,” said Frevert. More than 100 people attended the Capitol Hill reception, including 11 members of Congress, T&I Committee staff and representatives from partnering associations. The reception also featured large displays of public works projects highlighting innovative designs and achievements that underscore the key role of infrastructure in building a strong future.

“Chairman Oberstar and Representative Mica have been tireless advocates for public works programs, services and policies,” Frevert said. “Their commitment and support have made a far-reaching and positive impact on the nation’s infrastructure policies.”

“National Public Works Week on the Hill has become an important vehicle for APWA to communicate with Congress about public works needs and priorities,” said Peter B. King, APWA Executive Director. “This year’s events built upon a growing tradition of celebrating National Public Works Week and the contributions of public works professionals across the country with lawmakers in Washington, D.C.”

Together with the American Council of Engineering Companies, American Society of Civil Engineers, American Shore & Beach Preservation Association, The Associated General Contractors of America, Association of Equipment Manufacturers, National Association of Clean Water Agencies, National Association of Water Companies, Society of Municipal Arborists and Water Environment Federation, APWA

Both the U.S House of Representatives and Senate passed resolutions declaring May 18-24, 2008, as National Public Works Week. Introduced by Oberstar and co-sponsored by more than 20 congressional leaders, the House resolution (H. Res. 1137) recognizes public infrastructure, facilities and services as having “far-reaching effects on the United States economy and the Nation’s competitiveness in the world mar-

At the National Public Works Week on Capitol Hill celebration were (from left) American Society of Civil Engineers Executive Director Pat Natale, APWA President Larry Frevert, House Transportation Committee member Mary Fallin (R-OK), Ranking Member John Mica (R-FL), APWA Past President Bill Verkest and APWA Executive Director Peter B. King.


APWA Reporter

July 2008

Reception honorees Chairman James L. Oberstar (D-MN) and Ranking Member John Mica (R-FL) of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee were on hand to celebrate National Public Works Week.

ketplace” and playing a “pivotal role in the health, safety and well-being of the people of the United States.” Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chairwoman Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Ranking Member James Inhofe (R-OK) sponsored S. Res. 560, which “recognizes and celebrates the important contributions that public works professionals make every day to improve the public infrastructure of H. RES. 1137 the United States… and urges citizens…to join with representatives of the Federal Government and the American Public Works Association in activities and ceremonies…to pay tribute to the public works professionals of the Nation.” (Both resolutions can be found on APWA’s National Public Works Week home page at – Ed.)

And President George W. Bush sent a letter of appreciation recognizing the nation’s dependence on “the many men and women who serve our country with skill and integrity in the public works system.” More than 30 gubernatorial proclamations were on display during the reception. APWA also reached out to more than 350,000 listeners in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area, through drivetime publicity spots on the local National Public Radio affiliate. The spots were designed to raise awareness about public works and recognize the contributions of men and women who dedicate themselves to maintaining and providing public infrastructure.

President Frevert stands by the National Public Works Week displays as he addresses the NPWW on Capitol Hill attendees.

Becky Wickstrom can be reached at (202) 218-6736 or

Left to right: APWA President-Elect Noel Thompson, President Larry Frevert and Past President Bill Verkest posed for a photo during the National Public Works Week on Capitol Hill celebration.

In addition to congressional resolutions, Governors, Mayors and local leaders from across the U.S. and Canada signed proclamations in honor of National Public Works Week.

On May 16, members of the Hawaii Chapter met with Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann, who signed a proclamation announcing May 18-24 to be National Public Works Week in the City and County of Honolulu. From left: Lance Zhai, Publicity Director; John Lamer, Treasurer; Mayor Hannemann; Chandra Tanaka, President; Jimmy Kurata, Past President; and Rouen Liu, Delegate.

July 2008

APWA Reporter


On the Road with the Transportation Committee Carol S. Estes, P.E. Technical Services Program Manager American Public Works Association Kansas City, Missouri ew issues in public works involve as many members as those related to transportation. More than half of APWA’s members cite some aspect of transportation as their major area of job responsibility. Rising fuel costs, dwindling resources, emissions and sustainability are just a few of the issues followed and addressed by members of the Transportation Technical Committee.

fer a great way for APWA members to become involved with transportation issues. Any interested member, or potential member, may apply directly to a subcommittee. Membership is open and there is no deadline for application. If you are interested in serving on a subcommittee, contact staff liaison Carol Estes, P.E., at (816) 595-5222 or cestes@apwa. net for further information.

The committee develops strategies to provide members with resources for exchanging and developing ideas, information, skills, knowledge and technologies. Its goal is to develop and advocate environmentally-sound, sustainable, cost-effective and safe systems that enhance the livability and quality of life in our communities. The committee accomplishes its goals though partnerships and programs and participating in advocacy initiatives.

In August, the Transportation Committee-sponsored sessions at Congress will include:

In partnership with the Federal Highway administration (FHWA), the Transportation Committee distributes information to members about “Market Ready Technologies” produced by the FHWA Research and Technology Team. This year, a partnership meeting was held in Washington, D.C. to work on projects of joint interest and facilitate the transfer of technology between FHWA and APWA members. APWA Reporter articles, technical sessions at Congress and technology transfer are just some of the benefits of this important partnership. In another important partnership, APWA works with the Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) through the National Transportation Operations Coalition (NTOC). APWA participates in short-term projects such as the signal assessment survey, and provides member feedback on coalition initiatives. One of the most important functions of the Transportation Committee is monitoring federal transportation legislation. Committee members provide congressional briefings, testimony and advocacy support. Several recently participated in a Public Policy Fly-in in Washington, D.C., and all are actively involved in discussions about the looming Highway Trust Fund shortfall. The Transportation Committee has an active subcommittee structure. The Roadway Safety, Sustainable Communities and Winter Maintenance Subcommittees are all actively involved in focused transportation issues. For example, the Winter Maintenance Subcommittee assisted in production of the annual North American Snow Conference, which was held this year in Louisville, Kentucky. The subcommittees of12

APWA Reporter

July 2008

“Global Warming and Transportation: Traveling Greener”

“When Bridges Must Be Repaired or Replaced Fast”

“The I-35 Bridge Collapse – What Happened?”

“Leading Sustainability: Will Public Works Rise to the Occasion?”

“Will Anti-Icing Techniques Work in the South?”

The current members of the Transportation Committee are: •

Andy Lemer, Ph.D. (Committee Chair), Senior Program Officer, Transportation Research Board, Washington, D.C.

William A. Verkest, P.E. (Board Liaison), Texas Municipal Program Manager, HDR Engineering, Inc., Arlington, Texas

John T. Davis, P.E., Chief Engineer, Jacksonville Transportation Authority, Jacksonville, Florida

Tim Haynes, President, International Transportation Assessment Solutions (ITAS), Regina, Saskatchewan

Craig Olson, P.E., Capital Budget Assistant, Washington State Office of Financial Management, Olympia, Washington

Jeff Ramsey, P.E., Public Works Director, City of Auburn, Georgia

William Reichmuth, P.E., Deputy City Manager, Plans and Public Works, City of Monterey, California

Carol Estes, P.E. (Staff Liaison), Technical Services Program Manager, American Public Works Association, Kansas City, Missouri

Carol Estes can be reached at (816) 595-5222 or

More than 40 professionals earn APWA Fleet Certification

ince the program’s launch in September 2006, 41 fleet professionals from the U.S. and Canada have earned credentials as Certified Public Fleet Professionals (CPFP) from APWA. Four professionals recently passed the CPFP exam in February and seven passed in April. “CPFP certification is a hallmark of excellence for fleet professionals,” said APWA President Larry Frevert. “We are excited to see the program grow and continue to attract fleet professionals striving to maintain excellent public works services in their communities.”

Keith Nicolson, Fleet Radio Supervisor, City of Eugene, Ore.

Virgil Wasko, Fleet Manager, City of Largo, Fla.

The role of the public fleet operation has evolved over the years from providing high-quality, low-cost repair service to asset management and related business functions. The Public Fleet Professional Certification program is designed to ensure individual competency and provide the public works industry with recognized hiring and promotion standards.

For more information about the Public Fleet Professional Certification program or APWA’s other professional development initiatives, contact Certification Manager Becky Stein at (816) 595-5212 or

Certified Public Fleet Professional Upcoming Exams October 19, 2008, Virginia Beach, Virginia; April 29, 2009, Des Moines, IA; September 16, 2009, Columbus, Ohio. For more information visit

Recent Certified Public Fleet Professionals include: •

Alan Brown, Fleet Manager, City of Littleton, Colo.

Ronald Brown, Fleet Maintenance Superintendent, City of Conover, N.C.

Donald George, Mechanic, Willingboro Township, N.J.

William Hills, Public Works Maintenance Supervisor, City of Overland Park, Kan.

Ernest Hutman, Operations & Maintenance Manager, Hillsborough County Fleet Management, Tampa, Fla.

Mary Joyce Ivers, Fleet and Facilities Superintendent, City of San Buenaventura, Calif.

Tom Kagianis, Supervisor, Fuel Materials Management, City of Hamilton, Ontario

David Martin, Fleet Maintenance Supervisor, City of Lockport, Ill.

Jim McGonagle, Floor Leader, Town of Groton, Conn.

July 2008

APWA Reporter


New Orleans in pictures On these pages you’ll see just a few of New Orleans’ attractions you can visit before, during and after your Congress experience. For more information on each of these attractions, visit the New Orleans Metropolitan Convention and Visitors Bureau website at For more information on Congress and to register online, go to www.apwa. net and click on the Congress logo. Why not combine business with pleasure and incorporate your Congress trip into your vacation plans?

Some folks believe that Lousiana (and especially New Orleans) has the best cuisine in the world. Just come to our annual show in August and you’ll get the chance to see for yourself, especially if you stay around for the tremendous dinner planned for Wednesday’s Closing Banquet. Anyway, take a gander at this shot—trout with crawfish sauce—and tell us you’re not pumped to get to New Orleans. (Photo by Sarah Essex) The buildings and architecture of New Orleans are reflective of the history of New Orleans and the city’s multicultural heritage. New Orleans is world famous for its plethora of unique architectural styles, from Creole cottages to the grand mansions on St. Charles, from the balconies of the French Quarter to the neighboring skyscrapers in the Central Business District. (Photo: NOMCBV) Located next to Jackson Square and facing the Mississippi River, the St. Louis Cathedral is one of New Orleans’ most recognizable landmarks. It is often used as the backdrop for newscasts and political speeches featuring the City of New Orleans. It is one of the few Catholic churches in the United States that fronts a major public square, indicative of the Catholic roots of New Orleans. (Photo: NOMCVB) These iron gates welcome visitors to the New Orleans Museum of Art. Experience a world of art, from pre-Colombian to present day, just moments from the French Quarter. The New Orleans Museum of Art is one of the Gulf Region’s finest art museums featuring an outstanding permanent collection and an expansive Fabergé gallery. The museum also hosts numerous national and international traveling exhibitions. (Photo: NOMCVB)


APWA Reporter

July 2008

The French Quarter is known for its quaint narrow streets, lined with distinctive European architecture and wrought-iron balconies. The French Quarter is the oldest part of the city and is still a vibrant, residential neighborhood. Shown above is a courtyard in the French Quarter. (Photo: Cheryl Gerber) Here’s where you Congress attendees will be spending most of your time at the conference in August. The New Orleans Morial Convention Center (formerly the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center) is the 16th-largest facility of its kind in the United States, and is also one of the busiest. The first portion of the building was constructed as part of the 1984 Louisiana World Exposition; a series of additions in subsequent decades expanded the center further upriver. (Photo: NOMCVB) One of the country’s top-ranked zoos, Audubon Zoo offers an exotic mix of animals from around the globe, engaging natural habitats, lush gardens and resting spots, the mystical Louisiana swamp and “hands-on” animal encounters, as well as this delightful carousel. (Photo: Cheryl Gerber) The world-renowned Audubon Aquarium of the Americas is home to fish and sea life of all kinds, and visitors can get up close to some of the most fascinating creatures of the ocean. The Caribbean Reef tunnel, for example, is 30 feet long and allows the visitor a view of the Caribbean sea life viewed only by divers. Congress attendees will enjoy the Get Acquainted Party at the aquarium, preceded by a Mardi Gras parade along the streets of New Orleans. (Photo: NOMCBV)

July 2008

APWA Reporter



2008 American Public Works Association International



New Orleans Convention Center


New Orleans, LA

Exhibit space still available!

For information, call Christine von Steiger at 800-687-7469, ext. 207

Pre-Registration Form — Page 1 of 2 2008 APWA International Public Works Congress & Exposition

New Orleans Convention Center



New Orleans, Louisiana

August 17–20, 2008

REP0708 Last Name


First Name

E-Mail Address

Register for a full week of Congress and Exposition below. Otherwise, skip Part 1 and go to Part 2.

FULL CONGRESS WEEK All full-week registrations include: Entrance into the Exposition; all education sessions; your choice of Wednesday Workshops or the Public Works Stormwater Summit; Sunday’s Get Acquainted Party; Monday’s Awards Ceremony; and lunch on the exhibit floor on Sunday and Monday.

$616.30 $585

(a) Member Registration with Banquet (b) Member Registration without Banquet (c) Non-Member Registration with Banquet (d) Non-Member Registration without Banquet


$756.30 $720

(See page 2 for how you can apply part of your registration fee to individual membership in APWA.)

(e) Retired Member Registration with Banquet (f) Retired Member Registration without Banquet

$401.30 $350

(g) Chief Elected Official (Banquet Not Included) (Limited to one Chief Elected Official for each member registration.)

no charge

PART 2: WORKSHOP WEDNESDAY AND PUBLIC WORKS STORMWATER SUMMIT Attendees registered for the FULL CONGRESS WEEK (a–g above) can participate in any of the Wednesday Workshops or the Stormwater Summit at no additional cost. You must check the workshop(s) you would like to participate in but do not add the cost to your total. If you are NOT registered for a full week of Congress, you may register for any of these workshops at the prices listed below. MEMBER NONMEMBER WEDNESDAY MORNING WORKSHOPS/ONSITE DEMONSTRATIONS 7:30 a.m. – Noon (w1) 17th Street Canal Pumping System (w2) Audubon Nature Institute—Life After Katrina (w3) Watershed Wetland Wastewater, Mandeville, LA




(Full-week registrants enter $0 here.)

WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON WORKSHOPS 1:30 – 4 p.m. (w6) Strategic Thinking and Processes for Public Works (w7) Virtual Public Works (w8) Infrastructure Project Delivery (w9) Sustainability by Design



(Full-week registrants enter $0 here.)

WEDNESDAY FULL-DAY PUBLIC WORKS STORMWATER SUMMIT 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. (w10) Public Works Stormwater Summit



(Full-week registrants enter $0 here.)

WEDNESDAY MORNING WORKSHOPS 8:30 – 10:45 a.m. (Sizes are limited. Registrations will be accepted on a first come/first served basis.) (w4) Greening Your Fleet (w5) Training the Public Works Trainer

PART 3: DAILY EDUCATION SESSIONS AND EXPOSITION (Full-week registrants skip this section.) If you would like to attend the education sessions and exposition by the day, please mark which day(s) you are registering for below. (h) SUNDAY (ODS)













(Full-week registrants skip this section.) If you would like to attend the exposition only for one day, please mark which day you will attend.











Complete your Congress experience with these special events. (Additional fees apply to all registration categories.)

Pre-Congress Seminar: Self-Assessment Using the Public Works Management Practices Manual




Progressive Women in Public Works Breakfast

# of tickets ______________ X




CPWA Luncheon

Noon – 1:30 p.m.

# of tickets ______________ X




PWHS Luncheon

Noon – 1:30 p.m.

# of tickets ______________ X



(9) TUESDAY American Academy of Environmental Engineers Breakfast 7–8:15 a.m.

# of tickets ______________ X




# of tickets ______________ X





Diversity Brunch

7:30 – 8:45 a.m.

10 – 11:30 a.m.

(6) WEDNESDAY Reception & Banquet – Additional Tickets (one ticket included with a full-week registration)


# of tickets ______________ X (Offer limited to full Congress registrants)

(7) Congress Education Sessions on CD-ROM (8) Congress Education Sessions as an Online Library


TOTAL To register for workshops and events not listed on this form please visit or call 816-472-6100.

Pre-Registration Form — Page 2 of 2 2008 APWA International Public Works Congress & Exposition

New Orleans Convention Center


New Orleans, Louisiana



August 17–20, 2008


Is this your first Congress? (1) Yes (2) No APWA Membership ID# (Call 1-800-848-APWA to obtain your membership number if you don’t know it)

Badge Nickname (e.g., Dave, Jen, “Doc”, “Smiley”, etc.)

Last Name

First Name



Billing Address Street Address/P.O. Box City


Daytime Phone

Fax Number

Emergency Contact Name

Emergency Contact Phone Number(s)

Zip/Postal Code


E-mail address Emergency E-mail Address

CANCELLATIONS: If your plans change and you cannot attend the program, a colleague can attend in your place—just send us a fax or letter. Cancellations and requests for refunds must be in writing. A full refund, less a $50 administration fee, will be made if written notice is postmarked by July 17, 2008. Sorry, no refunds on registration fees or tickets will be issued after July 17, 2008 or for an amount less than $50. Refunds will be processed within 30 days after the Congress. This Pre-Registration Form is good only until August 1, 2008. No pre-registration forms will be accepted after August 1, 2008. After August 1, registrations will be accepted onsite only. Onsite registration will begin Saturday, August 16, 2008. Please note: No government vouchers or purchase orders will be accepted onsite. LIABILITY WAIVER: (Please read and check box.) I agree and acknowledge that I am undertaking participation in APWA events and activities as my own free and intentional act and I am fully aware that possible physical injury might occur to me as a result of my participation in these events. I give this acknowledgement freely and knowingly and that I am, as a result, able to participate in APWA events and I do hereby assume responsibility for my own well-being. I also agree not to allow any other individual to participate in my place. By checking this box, I certify that I have read and understood the Liability Waiver above. PHOTOGRAPHS: (Please read and check box.) I agree and acknowledge that APWA plans to take photographs at the APWA Congress and Exposition and reproduce them in APWA educational, news or promotional material, whether in print, electronic or other media, including the APWA website. By participating in the APWA Congress and Exposition I grant APWA the right to use my name, photograph and biography for such purposes. By checking this box, I certify that I have read and understood the Photograph information above.



(Please complete Section A, parts 1–6 on page 1 before completing this step.)

TOTAL FROM PAGE 1: $__________________ (Fees are in US Funds.) Check #_____________________ enclosed (Made payable to APWA) Government Voucher or Purchase Order #________________________________ Credit Card (check one): Visa MasterCard American Express YOUR CREDIT CARD WILL BE CHARGED IMMEDIATELY. Card Number

Expiration Date

Name as it appears on the card Date

Signature (required)

MAIL completed registration form with payment to: American Public Works Association PO Box 843742 Kansas City, MO 64184-3742

FAX credit card payments to: OR

817-277-7616 Important: If you FAX your registration form please DO NOT mail a form and risk duplicate billing.

APWA’s Federal ID # is 36-220-2880. QUESTIONS? Call APWA’s registration company at 817-635-4135, Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. CST.

What is your job title? (1) Public Works Director (2) Engineer (Director, City/Principal) (3) Deputy/Assistant Public Works Director (4) Deputy/Assistant Engineer (5) Department Head/ Division Chief (6) Administration (7) Administrative Assistant/ Manager (8) City Manager (9) Other What is your role in the purchase of public works equipment and/or services? (1) Final say (2) Recommend (3) Influence (4) Specify (5) None Do you intend to purchase equipment or services based on what you see at the Exposition? (1) Yes (2) No If yes, how large is your budget for purchases of equipment and/or services? (1) Under $50,000 (2) $50,001 – 100,000 (3) $100,001 – 500,000 (4) $500,001 – 1,000,000 (5) Over $1,000,000 What is the population of your jurisdiction? (1) Less than 25,000 (2) 25,001 – 50,000 (3) 51,001 – 100,000 (4) 101,001 – 250,000 (5) Over 250,000 How did you hear about Congress? (1) Congress Preview (2) Fax (3) Reporter magazine ad (4) Industry magazine ad (5) APWA website (6) E-mail (7) Referred by someone (8) You are a previous attendee (9) Invited by an exhibitor NONMEMBERS ONLY: Do you want $133 of your nonmember full registration fee applied towards your new individual APWA membership? (Not valid for membership renewals. Renew online at membership/memberrenewal.) Yes No


+EYNOTE3PEAKERS Setting the tone for our celebration of the spirit of public works renewalâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;andâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;looking forward to a future of positive and impactful leadership by public works professionals.

Benjamin S. Carson, MD Joseph Grenny Pediatric Neurosurgeon and Inspiring Storyteller Opening General Session August 17, 10 a.m.â&#x20AC;&#x201C;Noon

Business Communications Expert and New York Times Bestselling Author Monday General Session August 18, 8:30â&#x20AC;&#x201C;9:45 a.m.

Brian D. Biro

Take The Risk!

Influencer: The Power to Change Anything

Breakthrough Leadership

A world-renowned pediatric neurosurgeon and a mentor to countless individuals of all ages, Ben Carson carries with him a message of hope for and faith in the human spirit. His life today is far removed from its beginning in the inner cities of Detroit and Boston. It has been his own makingâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;thanks to his mother and a host of individuals who expected the very best from him. Dr. Carson is coauthor of four best-selling books: Take The Risk, Gifted Hands, THINK BIG, and The Big Picture.

Many of todayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s organizational leaders have little, if any, influence over the way employees behave. Join Joseph Grenny as he teaches leaders to diagnose the sources of influence that are responsible for the current behavior of their employees; they can create an influence plan for replacing bad behaviors with good ones and, ultimately, make change inevitable.

Americaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Breakthrough Coach Tuesday General Session August 19, 8:30â&#x20AC;&#x201C;9:45 a.m.

Recharge and ignite the â&#x20AC;&#x153;Eâ&#x20AC;? Power within youâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;energy, enthusiasm, and eagerness! We are all breakthrough leaders with the opportunity to move from fear to freedom, failure to faith, from impatience to patience, from good to great. In this extraordinary presentation, you will be energized and revitalized with a fresh sense of your own unstoppable spirit.

James Mapes

Founder and President, The Quantum Leap Thinking Organization Closing General Session August 20, 11 a.m.â&#x20AC;&#x201C;12:15 p.m.

Quantum Leap Thinking: You Can Create Your Future! In todayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s world, our possibilities are limited only by our imaginations, flexibility in thinking, and ability to be creative. James Mapes will challenge you to take back and apply right away the concepts and strategies presented at the 2008 Congress. Learn to recognize and break the habit of â&#x20AC;&#x153;doing it the way weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve always done it.â&#x20AC;? James pledges to give you a shot of enthusiasm and the skills to keep going upon your return home.

and donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t missâ&#x20AC;Ś


Friday, August 15, 8:30 a.m.â&#x20AC;&#x201C;4:30 p.m. Saturday, August 16, 9:30 a.m.â&#x20AC;&#x201C;4:30 p.m.


APWA and New Orleans Team Together!

Is there a light under your bushel worth sharing? The Diversity Exemplary Practices Award Joel Koenig, P.E. Senior Manager-Associate Crawford, Murphy & Tilly, Inc. Aurora, Illinois Member, APWA Diversity Committee

he American Public Works Association annually recognizes programs and individuals for their contributions to the public works community in the area of diversity. APWA recognizes efforts that value the contribution of individuals and organizations in the area of inclusiveness. Recognition of these contributions is celebrated through its Diversity Exemplary Practices Award. Readers of the APWA Reporter and longtime members of APWA know that one

of the long-term objectives of the Association is to foster an environment of inclusiveness, not only within the Association but also within the public works industry. APWA diversity components include race, gender, creed, age, lifestyle, national origin, disability, personality, educational background and income level. So where as a profession are we succeeding in this? As a profession, we tend to be a quiet group. We donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t like to â&#x20AC;&#x153;tootâ&#x20AC;? our own


horn. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a shame. By sharing our success stories, we have an opportunity to let others in our industry hear about all of the good things going on in the area of diversity. Certainly we like to celebrate the dedication of a shiny new building, bridge, park or what have you. These are fantastic items to celebrate. Let us also celebrate the efforts to welcome the diverse groups that come together to make these creations happen. Some of the recent past winners of the award include:

Organizations â&#x20AC;˘

2007: Workforce Development Plan, Oregon Department of Transportation, Salem, Oregon. ODOTâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Workforce Development System is used to identify, screen and provide preparatory training for individuals interested in highway construction careers.


2006: Diversity Committee, Engineering and Capital Projects Department, City of San Diego, California. The committee created a healthy working environment where all employees are valued and are part of a highperforming team that recognizes, supports and utilizes differences and similarities in promoting the departmentâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s objectives with â&#x20AC;&#x153;PRIDE.â&#x20AC;?


2005: School Assembly/Ocean Day Program, City of Los Angeles, California, Stormwater Public Education Program. The





APWA Reporter

July 2008

education program reaches out to a broad and diverse group of the city’s nearly three million residents to let them know about the public health and safety hazards that litter causes on the streets, in the neighborhoods, and at the beaches and the ocean. •

2003: Suzanne Crane Engineering, Inc., Milwaukie, Oregon. The firm of Suzanne Crane Engineering, Inc. has long been an advocate for employing and advancing women and other minorities in the public works career field.

Individuals •

2003: H. Reed Fowler, Jr., Director of Public Works, City of Newport News, Virginia

2002: Jennifer Barlas, Business Development Specialist, Foth & Van Dyke and Associates, Inc., Green Bay, Wisconsin

2002: Alvin Brooks, Councilman, City of Kansas City, Missouri

Jennifer Barlas, the 2002 recipient, had served as her local chapter diversity liaison and served on the national Diversity Committee as both a member and as chairperson. When asked about her thoughts about receiving the award and being recognized by APWA, Barlas indicated that, as a female and non-engineer, she felt that she was included in the organization and that her gender and non-technical career track were not perceived as a negative, but as one part of the whole APWA family. So what about those individuals, agencies and organizations who are making a difference when it involves inclusiveness—is there someone in the profession you know about who embodies these ideas? Is there an organization in your community or state that does this? If so, please consider nominating them for this award. Let the rest of us know of their good work and let their light shine on all of us. The process is simple and straightforward. Applications are accepted in early spring of each year and can be found online. To see a copy of the 2008 form go to: About/2008Awards/08FORMprof. pdf. It may be months from the application deadline, but it is never too early to begin looking around and talking with your chapter about what organization or person might just be worthy of this award.

Jennifer Barlas (right), recipient of the 2002 Diversity Exemplary Practices Award, and Laura McGovern, Chicago Metro Chapter Awards Committee Chair, take a moment to catch their breath at the annual Mathcounts competition.

Joel Koenig serves as the Chair, Public Relations for the Chicago Metro Chapter. He can be reached at (630) 8201022 or

APWA Book Review

The Dimensions of Parking (4th Ed.) 209 pp • 2001 • Urban Land Institute and National Parking Association

The parking industry continues to be a vital force in the American economy. The availability of parking is central to the successful development of the nation’s urban centers and businesses. Thousands of men and women are employed by companies that design and build parking facilities, manage them, or manufacture equipment used in the parking industry.

A critical factor in commercial projects, parking affects site design and costs, and its availability can make or break businesses, developments and downtown revitalization efforts. For more than 20 years, The Dimensions of Parking has been the reference that developers, architects, engineers and parking specialists have turned to for practical how-to information on best practices in parking development. Updated throughout, the fourth edition continues to cover the basics, along with the latest techniques for planning, designing, financing, building and operating a parking facility. Since the original edition was published in 1979, the dimensions of parking have gone through a full cycle, from accommodating some of the big gas guzzlers of the 1970s to the smaller cars of the 1980s. Recent trends have seen the popularity of the light truck and sports utility and larger vehicles. This change in the dimensions of the vehicle fleet requires a fresh approach to assure that parking facilities are properly sized, constructed and operated. With this edition, the book has been expanded to 24 chapters and includes up-to-date information and state-of-the-art techniques in development, operations and the latest trends: • • • • • • •


Covers intermodal aspects, automated parking, and parking geometrics. Offers current information on complying with the American with Disabilities Act. Describes the latest changes in building codes. Provides new standards for lighting. Covers the best practices for all facets of the development and operation of parking facilities. Explains the important issues to consider for free parking. Includes the latest techniques for managing parking facilities, such as self-operation, lease, contract and conAPWA Reporter

July 2008

cession agreements, and fixed and percentage management contracts. Illustrates how the popularity of SUVs and light trucks are affecting parking geometrics. Provides the latest information on funding and development of parking at facilities connected to city transit, rail or airports.

The result is a guide to best practice in the field of parking! The Urban Land Institute’s principal objective is to improve the quality of land use and development. Parking drives development as a significant component of built space. The space required for parking is a critical element in site design, constraining designers’ options for the size and location of buildings. Moreover, structured parking is costly, often making public sector participation in its financing key to the feasibility of a downtown revitalization project. An underlying principle of this publication is that adequate parking can be provided in a cost-effective manner. This will be an increasingly important concern as a profusion of free parking, once a commonly accepted assumption, is challenged on traffic congestion and air quality grounds. This publication gives due space to structured parking because such facilities minimize the amount of land needed to accommodate cars. Emphasis is also given to the fact that illconceived facility designs that lack the flexibility to respond to change can damage the present and future economic viability of the land use they are intended to serve. The parking consultant and the parking operator will play increasingly important roles on the development team to assure that parking is adequate but not excessive, and that it is well located, properly maintained and efficiently operated. It is hoped that the guidance provided in this publication will be of value to those needing current information on parking. In a field of rapid changes, each project should be addressed with the best information at hand. This edition continues to keep pace with the changes seen since the first Dimensions of Parking was conceived a quarter century ago. To purchase your copy, please call the APWA Bookstore at (800) 848-APWA, ext. 5254. Or, for more information on purchasing this publication and other American Public Works Association books, please visit the APWA Bookstore online at

Urban Transit + Green Design + Recreation =

The Right Total Solution

The power of integration In response to rapid growth and commuter needs in

Butler County, Pennsylvania, CDM used 3D technology to design an intermodal transit center for the Butler Transit Authority. This sustainable project combines green elements—LEED® design criteria, motion sensors on lights and in restrooms, and a recreational park— with fixed- and shared-ride transit systems, pedestrian and bicycle access, a taxi port, and parking facilities.

What a whirlwind weekend! Wendy L. Springborn-Pitman, MBA Engineering Services Administrator City of Tempe, Arizona Member, Emerging Leaders Academy Class 1 In November 2007, the APWA Leadership and Management Committee concluded its series of articles on public works leadership and management issues entitled “The Baker’s Potluck.” This was the third series of articles (the first being “The Baker’s Dozen,” the second being “The Baker’s Menu”) that discuss various leadership and management topics of interest to APWA members. The committee’s new series is entitled “Recipes for Success” and touches on a variety of leadership and management topics. Along with each article is an actual recipe for a favorite public works dish submitted by a member. Each recipe is a favorite from the members in their department. Give them a try. The anticipation of meeting our fellow Emerging Leaders Academy (ELA) members was reaching a fevered peak. Some knew other members while others didn’t, but we all had previously participated in monthly conference calls discussing

Brandon Industries, Inc.®

issues from ethics to solving a neighborhood traffic concern to where leaders get their power from. Now was the time to put faces behind the voices we’d been hearing all this time. Transportation became a challenge the first day of the retreat between the American Airlines grounding of planes and weather delays. Through it all, we still were able to gather together for our first night of pizza and planning for the weekend. It might have been coincidental but we were forced to meet each other in the hallway of APWA’s national headquarters in Kansas City while waiting for the meeting room to be set up and, oh yeah—the pizza! I believe that one of the keys for the weekend was to keep us on our toes and to take us out of our comfort zones. We were tasked with working with different team members throughout the weekend, presenting in front of the class, formulating and creating consensus for group answers to questions posed, and even learning how to deal with the media both as an interviewer and interviewee. The first full day of programming was jam-packed with information. We started out with a homemade breakfast (the biscuits and gravy were to die for!) compliments of Ann Daniels (APWA Director of Technical Services). Sue Hann (Deputy City Manager for the City of Palm Bay, Florida and member of the national Leadership & Management Committee), our fearless leader, and Kathleen Bishop (President/ CEO of the Greater Palm Bay Area Chamber of Commerce) gave us their definition of what defines a leader. We really took a look at the differences between being a leader and being a manager; for instance, a manager typically helps to bring order to chaos while a leader will typically create chaos from order by envisioning a better future and setting the direction for it.

Since 1987

Call for your FREE wholesale Catalog Signage Mailboxes 800-247-1274 Lighting


APWA Reporter

July 2008

Part of this program is homework—not a lot, but some. We had an ethics case study to review prior to our arrival and were to be prepared to discuss our opinions. By the end of the discussion, we all seemed pretty convinced that the principal character of the case study was unethical and an all-around not nice person. Then we heard about another case study that dealt with an individual who was basically doing their job as they saw it but was being railroaded out of their position with some pretty serious charges or, at least, that was how we were interpreting it. Bottom line, we ended up knowing the individual from the second case study and were quick to

jump to their defense; however, we were equally quick to dismiss the individual from the first case study. Can your ethics vary based upon personal relationships? Can your ethics vary based upon the issue presented, i.e., is it okay to do this but not to do that? It really got us thinking. Another program module focused on identifying who the cutthroats were in the group (just kidding, C.J.). The game was “Win as Much as You Can”—the goal, to score the highest individual points with almost no communication amongst your team. Rounds were played and points were to be gained at each round based upon how the individuals played their cards within the team structure. The last round of play was worth big points. During one of the few times we could speak to each other, our team determined that only one of our players had a high enough score to potentially win the whole game, so we sacrificed ourselves so that he could get the most points possible…and he did end up winning the game. The runner-up (who shall remain nameless) figured out how he could score big points by switching his game plan on the last round without letting on to his fellow teammates. He got the points but it wasn’t enough to beat our teammate. For me, the lesson is that you can try to win as much as you can, but sometimes it is better to sacrifice for the betterment of others.

The participants of the first Emerging Leaders Academy

We were honored that President Larry Frevert was able to join us on a conference call during his very busy schedule. Introductions were made all around and it was impressive how many people he had already met through his chapter visits and how much he knew about what was going on in the individual areas. At the end of our first day, we quickly realized that this was not a lecture series. Each class member participated, whether it was as the team scribe or as the team presenter, in discussing philosophies and debating perspectives. It was all-in-all interactive. Sue kept track of who was participating and made sure to include those who may have been a little quiet. She had this knack of being able to draw information from the participants that was valuable to share with everyone. All perspectives are needed to make informed decisions; it’s what you do with the information that can make the difference.

We were then off to dinner at a fantastic Italian restaurant called Lidia’s Italian Ristorante where we had fabulous food and wonderful conversation. After dinner, we enjoyed dessert at the revolving Skies Restaurant on top of the Hyatt Regency hotel where we were staying. I don’t believe that I have ever seen such a large piece of ice cream pie as I did that night—at least 5” high and I would have to say that the individual who ordered it put a pretty good dent in it! Oh, by the way, did I mention that Sue is very much an “everything must start on time” kind of person? She brought this hat with her from Florida that was basically a bright yellow and orange beanie with a palm tree on top of it. If you were late for the beginning of the day or even coming back from any breaks, you had to wear it. I got some pretty good pictures, but I will not divulge who had to wear it—look me up at Congress and I just might have them on me. The second day was equally jam-packed with information. We discussed several topics: Leading Change, Time Management and Who Are You. Patty Hilderbrand, APWA Directorat-Large, gave up her Saturday to come and talk to us about how she got involved with her local APWA chapter as well as her national participation. She also spoke to us about some aspects of what it means to be a leader and how to make those hard decisions. One of the exhilarating moments of the day was when communications consultant Brenda Viola challenged us with how to deal with the media. She gave an excellent presentation on the five big blunders that can clog your communication pipeline and how you can beat those blunders. Brenda elaborated on a key tool known as “bridging.” Not only was she full of energy, but she knew exactly what she was talking about from her own personal experiences.

Communications consultant Brenda Viola presented a class called “Mastering the Media” for the Emerging Leaders Academy Class.

The examples that Brenda spoke of were great, but what really brought it home was the role-playing we had to do. We received on-the-spot critiquing and were able to work at getting it right in a non-threatening environment. In fact, at the end of this module, one-third of the participants were involved as panelists for a press conference while the rest were overeager reporters trying to get the scoop. Everyone on the panel did a great job of diffusing the issues, standing on authority and expertise, and controlling the conference versus the reporters controlling the panel. All and all, it was a wonderful opportunity to network with others from across the country, both in the public and private sectors. We had diversity with regards to age, gender, July 2008

APWA Reporter


backgrounds, job responsibilities and ideas. The information gained from this weekend could be translated right into our everyday jobs. Why reinvent the wheel when we could take best practices from all over, tweak them a little bit, and make them our own?

“The retreat opened my eyes to a variety of public works positions, situations, demands and people.” “Dealing with the press presentation was awesome.” “Excellent advice/training on media relations.” “The information provided and hands-on activities gave us tools to take back with us and apply in our communities. The personal stories and examples that Sue and Kathleen shared brought reality to the class that this stuff really happens and how we need to be prepared and lead change.”

The “reporter” (Scott Brandmeier, Director of Public Works, Village of Fox Point, Wisconsin) interviews the “public works official” (Jay McArdle, Municipal Engineer, HNTB Corporation, Kansas City, Missouri) at the mock press conference during the Emerging Leaders Academy Class.

Now, Emerging Leaders Academy Class Number One has embarked on a project for APWA focused on the introduction of public works to middle school and high school students. We need to catch them early and get them on the right educational track to be prepared for a professional career in public works. Once the project is completed and accepted by the national group, I am sure you will all be hearing more about it. In closing, here are some comments from my fellow classmates: “I learned many important and helpful points and strategies for communicating with the press as well as other people when dealing with important topics. I truly enjoyed hearing others’ experiences and strategies for becoming involved with APWA and public works. The activities we participated in which stuck out in my mind were Defining Leadership and Ethics. I also really benefited from the relationships that were made over the weekend, many friendships and contacts that will be beneficial for many years to come. Being exposed to APWA on a national level was great, seeing the office and speaking, although briefly, with the APWA President.” “No other professional organization addresses leadership in public works.” “Amazing team building and networking opportunity.” “I truly enjoyed my time here and would highly recommend it to many people.” “The ethical discussion made all of us think about what really constitutes ethics.” “The best experience is learning from others.” 26

APWA Reporter

July 2008

“The APWA Emerging Leaders Academy has far exceeded my expectations with its focus on highlighting the necessary leadership and management skills that are necessary for any public works professional to have in their tool kit. The retreat with its focus on navigating through ethical issues to effecting change in an organization, and effectively interacting with the media, provided practical knowledge for real-life issues that may arise.” “The weekend was very intense with all of the information that was tossed our way. It has been a long time since I was as exhausted, mentally, as I was from attending this academy. The mental exhaustion, though, was well worth it. We learned something about our peers in the public works profession and, more importantly, I think we learned more about who we are as public works employees. The experience was very gratifying.” I will echo the sentiments of my classmates—we all highly recommend the program to anyone interested in learning what it takes to be a leader in the public works arena. You will make lifelong friends and begin establishing a network of people who can help you traverse the obstacles that may come your way in the future. Wendy L. Springborn-Pitman can be reached at (480) 350-8250 or

JALAPEÑO CHEESE SAUSAGE BALLS 1 lb. breakfast sausage 1½ cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese 1½ cup Bisquick baking mix 1 jalapeños (remove seeds and finely chop) 4-6 oz. softened cream cheese Ranch dressing Cook breakfast sausage until barely done. Mix with remaining ingredients and add enough ranch dressing to bind mixture. Roll into bitesized balls. Bake at 350 degrees about 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Can also substitute 1 lb. crumbled bacon for the sausage. Submitted by Kassidy Hill, Administrative Assistant, Public Works Department, City of San Juan Capistrano, California



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Public Works in India Dwayne E. Kalynchuk, P.Eng. General Manager of Environmental Services Capital Regional District Victoria, British Columbia Chair, APWA International Affairs Committee s a Past President of APWA, I have been extremely fortunate to be involved in numerous international travel opportunities, most recently leading a delegation of prominent Americans and Canadians, under the banner of People to People, to northern India. The primary professional objective of this delegation was to develop an understanding of the state and challenges for infrastructure in India. This was the second opportunity with People to People as I lead a group to China in 2005.

cities, golden beaches, misty mountain retreats, colourful people, rich culture and festivities. The cities of Delhi, Agra and Jaipur are known as the Golden Triangle. This group perfectly captures the pageantry of India. There is the marble symphony of the Taj Mahal, the imperial elegance of New Delhi and the splendors of the desert city of Jaipur. Every city has offered its unique blend of sights, sounds and experiences, from the opulence of the Moghul Empire to the vibrant life of modern India.

People to People sprang into existence through President Dwight D. Eisenhower. The 34th President of the United States sought a new path to international understanding and he developed People to People to be the vehicle on that path. President Eisenhower believed that ordinary citizens of different nationalities, if able to communicate directly, would solve their differences and find a way to live in peace. This simple thought—that people can make the difference where government cannot—is People to People’s mission, developed around personal exchanges and individual firsthand experiences of other cultures.

As an emerging superpower in the world, India is facing the challenge of providing key infrastructure services to its population. The delegation discovered the extent of these challenges and contributed their expertise to our Indian counterparts. After assembling in New York City, the delegation of 15 members from across the U.S. and Canada took a 16-hour direct flight to New Delhi. While it was an extremely long flight, at least there was no need for a mid-point transfer. We arrived in New Delhi late in the evening, leaving a pleasant fall day in New York City, and had our senses bombarded in India—new smells, sounds and general culture shock hit us. Fortunately, our local People to People guide was there and able to gather us and take us to our hotel where a rest and time adjustment was needed. Over the next three days we met with the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, the International Commission on Irrigation and Drainage, the Central Water Commission New Delhi and GZT India (a partnership in the health infrastructure development between India and Germany).

Housing being constructed by the Rajasthan Housing Board

The traffic on roads of Delhi is a heterogeneous mix of cycles, scooters, buses, cars and rickshaws jostling with each other. This has resulted in a chaotic situation, so much that the average number of persons killed per day due to road accidents has increased to five, and seriously injured to 13. It is expected that these numbers will further grow in the years to come. To rectify this situation, the government of India set up the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation and constructed 65 km of metro rail tracks in Delhi by 2005.

The Republic of India is a country with a population of 1.16 billion people, spread over a land frontier of 15,200 square km and a coastline of 6,516 km. It is bounded by the majestic Himalayan ranges in the north and edged by a spectacular coastline, surrounded by three seas. India is a vivid kaleidoscope of landscapes, magnificent historical sites and royal

India has achieved considerable development progress in recent decades and is perceived as the “largest democracy in the world.” Nevertheless, some 320 million of India’s population live below the poverty line—the reason for partnering with the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development for more than 40 years. The partner-


APWA Reporter

July 2008

The group’s sunrise visit to the Taj Mahal

ship, GTZ India, focuses on sustainable economic development, energy, environmental policy, including conservation and sustainable use of natural resources, and health sector reforms aimed at fighting HIV/AIDS and polio.

expansion, urban environmental improvements, solid waste management, drainage, slum improvements, medical and health centre work, and community awareness and participation programs.

In addition to the technical meetings in Delhi, the group toured Old Delhi with a visit to Raj Ghat, a simple memorial to Mahatma Gandhi; the magnificent Red Fort, built during the years 1638 to 1648 when the Moghul Empire was at its peak; and a visit to the Qutab Minar, the tallest stone tower in India, constructed in 1199.

In addition to our meeting, we toured a tertiary sewage treatment plant, which was designed, constructed and is being operated by a private company from Austria. This illustrated privatization of public infrastructure in India, which is a key issue these days in North America.

On the fourth day, an early morning flight took us to one of the most picturesque cities in India: Jaipur, the pink city. Jaipur is located in the state of Rajasthan, which is the largest state in India. The population of Rajasthan increased approximately 30% between 1991 and 2001, increasing from 440 million to over 560 million. This growth has presented many challenges to providing sufficient infrastructure to the population. The Rajasthan Urban Infrastructure Development Project (RUIDP) was formed to provide the mechanism to find and construct the needed facilities. Our delegation was fortunate to meet with several high-level officials to receive presentations on water supply, rehabilitation and

Our technical and social tours in Jaipur also took us to a new housing development being undertaken by the Rajasthan Housing Board. While we were all shocked by the high-end housing being constructed by the housing board, the project is a pilot to see if the profit gained from the development could be reinvested into affordable housing for the majority of the population. We were also fortunate to visit an SOS Children’s Village in Jaipur. The first SOS Children’s Village in India was established in 1964, and after 42 years there are over 39 children’s villages and 122 allied projects, such as schools, kindergartens, social and medical centres, vocational training centres July 2008

APWA Reporter


and outreach initiatives, as well as the SOS Emergency relief and rehabilitation program. Our cultural tours in Jaipur took us to some of the most beautiful palaces in the country; namely, the fabulous Amber Fort in the ancient capital of Amber, and the Palace of Winds, otherwise known as Hawa Mahal. It is an elaborate façade behind which the ladies of the court used to watch the daily goings-on in the street below.

The final leg of our journey was a nine-hour bus ride to Agra to visit the Taj Mahal. We arrived in Agra, dusty and tired from an all-day bus trip, preparing ourselves for a sunrise visit to the Taj Mahal the next morning. One of the sayings in India is, “There are two groups of people in this world: those who have not seen the Taj Mahal and those who have.” Our People to People group is now with the elite group! Certainly the Taj Mahal is the most beautiful temple in all of India. Built as a promise of love by a king to his dying wife, it took 22 years to construct and involved over 40,000 artisans. The Taj Mahal is referred to as a “dream in marble” with semi-precious stones inlaid in it. Years after completion of the Taj Mahal, the king wanted to construct a black Taj Mahal across the river as his mausoleum. His son took offense that this would be an insult to his mother’s temple and he imprisoned the king and halted construction. The only evidence that remains today is the foundation of the black Taj Mahal.

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APWA Reporter

July 2008

As the largest democracy in the world, India certainly faces its challenges in the provision of public works infrastructure for its exploding population. However, the determination, knowledge and desire of our Indian counterparts to care for the environment and reduce poverty is making a substantial difference. People to People delegations provide a unique opportunity to visit and experience other cultures and to see that, while we all very different, our values, goals and day-to-day issues are very much the same. Discussions are presently underway on another public works delegation potential in the latter part of 2009. If you are interested, please contact the writer. Dwayne E. Kalynchuk was APWA National President in 2003-04. He is a former member of the Education, Nominating, Finance and PACE Committees. He can be reached at (250) 360-3092 or

International Exchange at the APWA Congress in August 2008 Helena Allison Engineer Design Manager Willdan Sacramento, California Member, APWA International Affairs Committee e all know that each year APWA members and other public works professionals look forward to our International Public Works Congress & Exposition. Many of you know it is international because not only do members from Canada and Mexico participate, but also because members from New Zealand, Australia, and the Czech and Slovak Republics come and share their public works experiences, expertise and ideas. This year is no different. From August 17–20 we will all gather in the beautiful City of New Orleans in Louisiana. We all have been waiting for this opportunity since the devastating floods that prevented this conference from taking place a couple of years ago in New Orleans. We will all enjoy, listen, share and attend meetings, events and lectures. Many of you will be looking to our international members to see what they have to offer at the Congress. Each year they come prepared. This year you may want to pay extra special attention to a very important and timely topic shared by the Czech members. Come and see what they have to say during their humble presentation. You don’t want to miss this one. Now that I have your attention I will reveal the topic. Yes, you all have guessed correctly that it is on E-waste.

is no stranger to our APWA Congress. Some of you may have seen his presentation in Kansas City in 2006. He will share the initial discussions that took place in Europe in 1990 and how these discussions created national policies for over 27 European Union countries. He will share the E-recycling methods and will stress the importance and responsibilities of producers, importers, distributors, shops, customers, municipalities and recycling companies. He will share the list of the most important E-waste generating products and the mandatory annual recycling reporting by manufacturers and importers. Dr. Neuzil will also show what methods, incentives and systems are in place to assure E-waste recycling and proper disposal; the goals and results of E-waste management and

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Dr. Jiri Neuzil (seated) fields questions following his presentation at the 2006 APWA Congress in Kansas City, Missouri.

One proud member of the Czech Public Works Association, Dr. Jiri Neuzil, will present a lecture on that topic. Dr. Neuzil


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APWA Reporter


collection systems; how E-waste is implemented and funded in towns and cities; how operations are managed and whether they are fully automated or manual; the purpose of codes on all E-waste products; and the frequencies and schedules for successful E-waste recycling, collection, management and costs.

Members of the Czech and Slovak contingent pose outside the Marriott Hotel during the 2006 Congress.

This presentation will also touch on statistics and show hidden dangers of materials contained in the E-waste. Just think of computers and cell phones: We are so accustomed to using them in our everyday lives, but computers and cell phones






APWA Reporter

July 2008

So, without giving away any more information, come and enjoy, listen and learn something about the E-waste responsibility, participation and disposal. Come meet and talk with our international guests. We will host nine members from the Czech Republic and several from the Slovak Republic and other countries. Just as the American members travel to Europe to meet with our Czech and Slovak colleagues and make new friends and see new places, you can broaden your knowledge and also make new friends. Show support and meet the men and women from Australia, the Czech and Slovak Republics, New Zealand, Mexico and Canada. Make our international members from far away welcome and proud! Helena Allison is a Past President of the Sacramento Chapter. She can be reached at (916) 924-7000 or

NEW ZEALAND, AUSTRALIA PW PROFESSIONALS TO ATTEND â&#x20AC;&#x2122;08 CONGRESS Our counterparts from New Zealand have their professional association known as INGENIUM and they intend to have two delegates attend this yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Congress. INGENIUM Chief Executive Ross Vincent and President Ashley Harper are looking forward to learning more about environmental sustainability and creative ways to solve the eminent shortage of qualified applicants currently being educated through the schools. In addition to learning, Mr. Harper will be presenting a session on how innovative framework areas in New Zealand have developed to minimize waste. Australiaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Public Works Association, known as the Institute of Public Works Engineering Australia (IPWEA), will be sending a contingent of representatives to Congress and will be completing their usual study tour of areas in the United States.

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contain heavy metals such as lead, barium and cadmium which can be very harmful to our health. Even the fancy plastic flame-retardant covers and cases can release particles that can damage human endocrine functions.

Submitted by Brian W. Pettet, Director of Public Works, Pitkin County, Colorado, member of the International Affairs Committee and Chair, APWA/IPWEA/INGENIUM Partnership Task Force

or more information about these programs or to register online, visit Program information will be updated as it becomes available. Questions? Call the Education Department at 1-800-848-APWA.




Single- vs. Dual-Stream Recycling: One Size Doesn’t Fit All


PSMJ’s Public Works Project Management Bootcamp – Seattle, WA


PSMJ’s Public Works Project Management Bootcamp – Toronto, ON


PSMJ’s Public Works Project Management Bootcamp – Boston, MA


Self Assessment Workshop – St. Paul, MN


The Urban Forest—Preserve and Protect



2008 APWA International Public Works Congress & Exposition – The Best Show in Public Works – New Orleans, LA


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Single- vs. Dual-Stream Recycling: One Size Doesn’t Fit All Thursday, July 17, 2008 Is your agency grappling with the choice between single- and dual-stream recycling? What factors need to be taken into consideration as you decide which option will work best for your community’s situation? Get your questions answered by solid waste professionals who will examine: • Cost differences for collection, equipment, and processing • Residential recycling rates • Contamination issues • Markets for processed materials • Contracting issues

July 2008

APWA Reporter


Cracks in the nation’s bridge system? Andrew Lemer, Ph.D., Senior Program Officer, Transportation Research Board, Washington, D.C., and Chair, APWA Transportation Committee; Jeffery Ramsey, Public Works Director, City of Auburn, Alabama, and member, APWA Transportation Committee

t was in all the papers and television news: Just after 6 p.m. on Wednesday evening, August 1, 2007, as many rush-hour commuters were driving homeward and a few early fans were on their way to see the evening’s baseball game, the 1,907-foot bridge carrying highway I-35 across the Mississippi River in Minnesota’s Twin Cities collapsed. Several dozen vehicles and tons of debris dropped into the river and onto the roadways beneath the span. It took nearly three weeks before all of the victims could be accounted for, a total of 13 people killed and 144 injured. The state’s Governor Tim Pawlenty, quoted in a local newspaper, that night called the I-35W collapse “a catastrophe of historic proportions” for the state.1 The event was tragic, and across the country people offered their prayers and sympathies as the rescue and recovery work proceeded. In the days and weeks that followed, public attention focused on what might have been the causes for the collapse and what might have been done to prevent it. The reporters discovered the federal National Bridge Inventory (NBI) database of inspection records and found that the I-35W bridge, built in 1967, ranked near the bottom of the nationwide ratings list.2 In 2005, the bridge was rated “structurally deficient,” but was nevertheless judged to have met “minimum tolerable limits to be left in place as it is.” A subsequent inspection by the Minnesota Department of Transportation, conducted in June 2006, found cracking and other problems of fatigue.3

Words and Meanings How can it be, many people asked, that a bridge viewed as “structurally deficient” is still being used? What does the rating really mean? Are more of the nation’s working bridges at risk of catastrophic failure? Meeting with our fellow APWA members at the annual Congress in September, we found such questions were being asked even among public works professionals. After the 1967 collapse of the Silver Bridge on U.S. Highway 35 in Point Pleasant, West Virginia, Congress passed the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1968, establishing the federal bridge inspection program and directed the states to maintain an inventory of federal-aid highway system bridges. The U.S.

Department of Transportation subsequently promulgated the National Bridge Inspection Standards (NBIS). Federal regulations now mandate that bridges on the nation’s federal-aid highway system and included in the NBI are to be inspected every two years. Bridges or culverts that carry vehicular traffic and are 20 feet or less in length at the bridge center line are not included in the NBI. The NBIS inspection produces a “sufficiency rating,” a single number that can vary from a best score of 100 down to 0. The rating, comparing the existing bridge to a new bridge constructed according to current engineering design standards, is meant to provide an overall measure of the bridge’s condition. The calculations producing the rating include both safety elements (such as structural integrity) and factors such as the bridge’s lane width and lane count compared to its current traffic. The formula considers structural adequacy, whether the bridge is functionally obsolete, and level of service provided to the public.4 The inspection and assessments of a bridge’s condition are made by small teams of people and may or may not include a trained engineer. Some people have questioned the ratings’ consistency and reliability, but those questions we will leave for another time. Structural adequacy is assessed when inspectors rate the condition of different parts of a bridge on a scale of 0 to 9, with 9 being “excellent” and zero being “failed.” A rating of 4 or less for the deck (that is, riding surface), the superstructure (which supports the riding surface), or the substructure (foundation and supporting posts and piers) is “structurally deficient.” Such bridges may be restricted to light vehicles or closed to traffic, but that determination is distinct from the rating. Structurally deficient means simply that there are elements of the bridge that should be monitored or repaired. Because there are several ways a bridge can earn a “deficient” rating, the rating alone does not mean that the bridge is likely to collapse or even that it is unsafe.


A bridge is judged to be functionally obsolete if it was built to standards that are not used today. Narrow traffic lanes or shoulders, vertical clearance insufficient to serve current traffic demands, and drainage elements too restrictive to prevent flooding of the roadway are among the factors that can cause a bridge to be judged functionally obsolete.





APWA Reporter

July 2008

Level of service refers to the bridge’s ability to accommodate traffic without being a bottleneck. Like the roadways that connect to either end of the bridge, too few lanes and poor geometric design can be a constraint as traffic levels increase over time.

minutes from downtown, must travel an added three miles, more than doubling their travel time and forcing the city to add extra patrols. Local restaurants and other businesses in the newly isolated area are worried. The city is asking the state to pay the costs of the closure and repair.

The importance of the overall sufficiency rating lies particularly in its use as a criterion to determine eligibility for federal funds. Rehabilitation or replacement of deficient bridges must be paid for by the bridge’s state- or local-government owners, but federal aid can cover a large portion of the tab. To be eligible for federal aid, the bridge must meet criteria specified by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). For replacement, the sufficiency rating must be less than 50 and the bridge must be judged to be either “functionally obsolete” or structurally deficient. For repair, the sufficiency rating must be less than 80 and the jurisdiction is prevented from using any additional federal aid on that facility for 10 years.

In Auburn, Alabama, the Chewacla State Park Bridge gives another example. This bridge, located on a very low-volume dirt road, was judged by the inspectors to be both structurally deficient and functionally obsolete, and basically unsafe. There were alternate access routes for all of the properties served by the bridge and no one would be significantly inconvenienced by closing the roadway. The city knew that bridge replacement would have been very expensive. It seemed like a “no brainer”: Close the bridge! The city did so and moved to transfer the right-of-way to an adjacent state park. But neighboring residents sued the city to block the decision. During sworn testimony, residents admitted that they seldom took the bridge to reach their homes. The courts ruled for the city, but did make a monetary award to the plaintiffs.

Balancing Forces As most public works officials probably know, the decision that a bridge is a threat to public safety, that it should have restrictions imposed on traffic or be completely closed to vehicular traffic is a difficult one and seldom based strictly on technical criteria. The task of making such a decision, like that of the bridge itself, entails balancing complex forces. While few people would knowingly choose to place themselves in jeopardy, nobody wants the bridge closed. Road users are inconvenienced when they must take longer routes to work and school. Businesses and residents see loss of sales and declining property values when traffic declines and they lose access to customers and neighbors. And a bridge that is standing looks safe to almost everyone except a trained observer. Some of us on APWA’s Transportation Committee have seen the problem up close. Take the Murray River Bridge in Tacoma, Washington, for example. On October 23, 2007, the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) suddenly closed the 94-year-old structure to all vehicular traffic. The agency’s press release explained that WSDOT engineers, in their most recent inspection, had found structural deterioration sufficient to warrant the closure. Because of its poor condition, the release explained, the bridge had been undergoing inspections every six months for some time.5 Some members of the public were suspicious, to say the least. Local news media quoted one business owner who wondered why the bridge had been allowed to deteriorate to such an extent and noted that the closing occurred less than two weeks after the state’s new Secretary of Transportation took office. The bridge had been transferred to city ownership a decade earlier, when a parallel river crossing was developed. The state had planned to demolish the bridge but local forces rallied to save it.6 Now fire and police vehicles, previously able to reach the city’s Tideflats area within five

Show Me the Money It’s an ill wind that blows no good, so the saying goes, and even the I-35W bridge collapse has a bright side in the attention it brought to the bridge maintenance, the costs of maintenance, and the shortage of funds for maintenance that plagues many agencies. According to reports by Minnesota Public Radio, Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak was forced by events to delay presentation of his 2008 budget to his city council, to allow time to shift more money toward public works.7 We lament that it took a fatal catastrophe to make that shift; at the same time we applaud when elected officials do the right thing. Unfortunately, even when the will is there, the way may not be. Some jurisdictions, for example faced with declining economies or disproportionate cost increases, simply cannot mobilize adequate resources for repair and maintenance of their transportation infrastructure. Several years ago, the 48foot-long Shelton Mill Road Bridge in Auburn washed out in a major storm. The structure was located on one of the city’s major thoroughfares; its loss had a tremendous negative impact on the city as a whole and the 4,200 citizens who traveled the roadway daily. The replacement cost would have devastated the city’s small budget. Fortunately for Auburn, the state stepped in to provide a grant to rebuild the bridge. The NBI includes about 597,000 bridges. More than 300,000 of these structures are identified as owned by local authorities. (The share of local bridges varies a great deal among states because of the variety of ways that states manage their road systems. This is another matter best left for another time.) About one in four of locally-owned bridges in the NBI is rated as somehow “deficient.”

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July 2008

APWA Reporter


In the wake of the I-35W collapse, Minnesota’s Representative Oberstar, chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, introduced legislation that would authorize funding for repair of bridges on the National Highway System (NHS), but this legislation—even if it passes and is signed by the President—would provide at best a small fraction of the funds that engineers estimate are needed to fix the nation’s bridges and would do very little for bridges that are locally-owned. The U.S. Department of Transportation’s 2006 Report on Conditions and Performance of the Nation’s Highway and Transit Systems estimated that eliminating the current bridge repair and rehabilitation backlog would require spending on average $12.4 billion per year to the year 2024, nearly 20 percent more annually than was spent in 2004. The actual numbers would likely be much larger: All of these figures are stated in constant-dollar terms, while most agencies are seeing rapid increases in their construction costs. The system’s condition, to borrow a term from the NBIS, is deficient, and nowhere more so than at local levels. While federal and state officials debate gas taxes, most local governments are hamstrung when it comes to raising revenue for transportation. Federal government statistics show that the share of gas taxes and other intergovernmental transfers making their way into local government coffers provide

only about six percent of local revenue for roads. Most of the money local governments can spend comes from property taxes, general-fund appropriations, and the like. Even in those jurisdictions with a receptive electorate, many elected officials are reluctant to take on the effort required to craft and gain acceptance of bridge-oriented revenue measures— think sales taxes or special assessments. It is becoming clear to many of us in the public works business that local governments must have assistance from state or federal levels or both to ensure that locally-owned bridges remain safe and fully functional. While these bridges may not be designated part of a national system, they represent vital links in the economies of their regions, and weight postings and closures can have a significant cumulative impact on the nation’s productivity. One Minneapolis newspaper last August quoted a St. Paul resident who was on his way to the Metrodome to watch the Twins play the Kansas City Royals. He had driven along the road passing beneath the I-35W bridge, seconds before it fell. “I heard it creaking and making all sorts of noises it shouldn't make,” the man said. “And then the bridge just started to fall apart.” If we cannot find a way to take concerted action to fix our bridges nationwide, we could find ourselves looking back on the loss of local structures as well as the I-35W bridge as only the creaking before the catastrophe. Dr. Andrew Lemer can be reached at (202) 334-3972 or alemer@; Jeff Ramsey can be reached at (334) 501-3000 or

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APWA Reporter

July 2008

On May 8 in Camarillo, Calif., APWA National President Larry Frevert, along with Myron Calkins, Past National President in 1970-71, presented the Top Ten Public Works Leader of the Year award to Ron Calkins, Director of Public Works, City of Ventura, Calif., and Myron’s son. From left: Larry Frevert, Myron Calkins and Ron Calkins

APWA proposes funding and financing recommendations for next Surface Transportation Authorization APWA SAFETEA-LU Reauthorization Task Force and Transportation Technical Committee

ransportation funding levels are inadequate to meet the demands we face. Congress will begin its work to define the shape and size of our nation’s next transportation program. Our voices need to be heard. The Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act—A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU), will expire in 2009. In anticipation of the expiration of the Act, APWA’s Board of Directors formed a task force to draft a position statement to advocate for features in the new federal program. The position statement was adopted by the Board after careful review by the Transportation Committee and the Government Affairs Committee. (For a full copy of the position statement, refer to APWA’s website.) The Board fur-

ther approved funding for a grassroots campaign to get our message out. The Association’s leadership has been active meeting with USDOT officials, congressional members, and other associations—but your voice is needed.

Why is this federal legislation important to us? Local governments own about 75 percent of the nearly fourmillion-mile roadway network and about half the nation’s highway bridges, and manage about 90 percent of the transit systems. With nearly every trip beginning and ending on a local road, street or sidewalk, we believe in the value of a strong local-state-federal partnership as key to ensuring a safe, seamless and efficient multi-modal transportation system. Chronic underinvestment in our transportation system over decades is threatening our future and jeopardizing safety, our economic competitiveness and environmental quality. The extent of the needs is staggering. The National Surface Transportation Policy and Revenue Study Commission found that we need to increase transportation investment to between $225 billion and $340 billion annually for the next 50 years to bring our transportation system into good repair. As a nation, we currently invest between $85 billion and $100 billion annually. Federal, state and local leaders, along with the private sector, need to act on a mix of solutions to achieve a sustainable transportation system for the next century. The Commission report clearly shows that a renewed commitment to reinvest in our transportation infrastructure is long overdue. APWA believes that we have an opportunity in the next reauthorization to take bold steps to address this situation. Here are several of APWA’s financing recommendations:

Raise the Motor Fuel Tax and Index It APWA recommends that the current federal motor fuel tax rate be raised to restore the purchasing power lost to inflation since its last increase in the 1990s, and then index it to automatically adjust on a timely interval using an appropriate index such as the CPI.


APWA Reporter

July 2008

Develop Vehicle-Mileage Fee Technologies APWA supports incentives to develop new concepts to offset revenue losses caused by more fuel-efficient vehicles. One such concept is the vehicle-miles driven approach in addition to gas taxes or in lieu of gas taxes. This is a technologydriven application that records vehicle-miles driven to allow equitable payment of a fee to the state or federal government, based upon an established rate per vehicle-mile driven. The most efficient approaches are yet to be determined, but these concepts are worthy of review and consideration.

Expand Access to Innovative Financing Tools APWA recommends further expansion of options for the use of financing mechanisms such as public-private partnerships, tolling and congestion pricing.

Implement Utility System/Enterprise Funds Model APWA recommends that the federal government look at transportation funding in the same way that cities look at utility systems and enterprise funds. The essence of this approach would be for the federal government to create an independent entity that would be given the authority to oversee an ongoing revenue stream to fund transportation needs without the requirement for congressional action, but with congressional oversight. This would also be similar to the mechanism used to finance local water or sewer systems, storm drainage utilities, or municipal utility districts. A portion of that steady revenue stream could be used to finance bonds for needed improvements or expansions of the assets of the enterprise, while the remainder could be used to finance investments over time.

Incentives for Local Financing APWA supports federal incentives for state and local financing of our transportation system. The leaders of our local governments need to be given incentives to continue such actions on a wider basis. They must know that the new funds generated are used strictly for local purposes, that their projects are given a higher priority than allowed by traditional funding programs, and that their dollars are being leveraged at a higher level as specific projects are funded. Through a collection of these funding and financing solutions, we believe that the federal government must maintain a strong, focused federal role in funding our national, regional and local transportation systems. APWA supports several key priorities for continued federal investment:

First: Protecting and preserving existing transportation facilities Protection and preservation of the existing system should be one of the highest priorities of SAFETEA-LU reauthorization. APWA recognizes the preeminent importance of capital reinvestment in transportation infrastructure. Maintaining

and improving road and bridge conditions and roadway operations will reduce congestion, improve safety, protect the environment and promote economic development.

Second: Improving goods movement The successor to SAFETEA-LU should direct investments to ensure the effective functioning of a National Highway System that supports intercity, interstate and commercial goods movement corridors. Support of goods movement is critical to local, regional and national economic development and job creation. Federal funding needs to reflect this growing need for infrastructure to support the movement of goods throughout and outside of our nation. At both of the levels of international trade and household distribution, increases are expected in freight movement. Studies forecast a dramatic increase in U.S. maritime trade, which will lead to more domestic freight movements. The national freight system is multi-modal and the connections between the modes (port-rail, port-highway, highway-rail) must be enhanced to support this coming growth. Strategies should include a focus on additional capacity, safety improvements to minimize intermodal conflicts or delays, efficiency improvements to reduce supply chain costs and environmental impacts, and regulatory changes to deliver projects faster. Freight movement (measured as vehicle-miles traveled) is increasing faster than household vehicle-miles traveled. As more Internet commerce is conducted, freight and light-duty commercial vehicle trips increase to bring those purchases to the delivery point.

Third: Enhancing safety for users of the transportation system APWA supports increased investment through a strong core safety program aimed at improving road and bridge conditions and roadway operations on all public roads and on publicly-owned bicycle and pedestrian trails and pathways in order to reduce motorist, pedestrian and bicyclist injuries and fatalities.

Fourth: Providing solutions to urban congestion APWA supports increased investment for programs that maximize highway and city arterial street construction where needed, and public transportation in urban areas to relieve traffic congestion in urban areas.

Fifth: Continuing energy independence through multimodalism Continuing SAFETEA-LUâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s emphasis on multimodal approaches to transportation programs is critical to improving our energy independence, improving mobility and promoting responsible transportation decision-making. We need to reduce our dependence on foreign oil, as well as the need to reduce the production of greenhouse gases. This manJuly 2008

APWA Reporter


date places new emphasis on the importance of investing in commuter rail and bus transit. Transit funding in the past has not been on a level playing field with highway and road investments. The time has come to increase our investment in commuter rail and bus transit. The investment in passenger rail, in particular, can have important cross benefits for freight movement via our national rail systems.

Win Your Battles

Sixth: Enhancing flexibility in the use of federal funds To best meet national, state and local transportation needs, APWA urges increased flexibility to use federal funds on a range of transportation alternatives, as well as more flexibility in allowing for contingencies in the planning and funding processes. Without latitude for local flexibility in determining funding sources and amending plans, communities lose the ability to move to the next project in line if an unforeseeable problem develops with a particular project. APWA encourages retaining and expanding flexibility for state and local governments through value-added processes, less prescriptive regulations and more timely coordination between federal agencies that implement federal transportation and environmental legislation.


0ROGRAM4RACKS Low-Impact Development)NlLTRATION BIORETENTION GREEN infrastructure, smart growth, and more Stormwater and the Construction Site: Compliance0ROGRAM management, inspections, regulatory issues Stormwater and the Construction Site: BMPs)NSTALLATIONAND maintenance, sediment and erosion control BMP Case Studies3TRUCTURALANDNONSTRUCTURALBESTMANAGEMENT TECHNIQUESTOACHIEVEWATER QUALITYGOALS Stormwater Program Management&ROMHOUSEKEEPINGTOPUBLICOUTREACHTOFUNDING Water Quality Monitoring-ONITORING SAMPLING ILLICITDISCHARGES ANDMORE Research & Testing of BMPs/Technical Issues4ECHNICALTRACKFORTESTINGANDCOMPARING &ORADDITIONALINFORMATION or contact THE3TORM#ONDIRECTORAT   EXT

The Official Journal of StormCon APWA_0801_5p

APWA Reporter

July 2008

APWA supports streamlining project delivery as well as allowing alternative methods of project delivery. We need to address the problem of project delays and rapidly escalating costs associated with duplicative and lengthy regulatory requirements. Specific timelines for project reviews and findings by regulatory agencies for all transportation improvement projects would dramatically reduce the overall time to move a transportation project through design to construction. We need your help by talking to your local elected officials, community and business leaders, and your congressional members about the Associationâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s interests and the need to invest in our transportation system.

August 3â&#x20AC;&#x201C;7, 2008 /RLANDO7ORLD#ENTER-ARRIOTT /RLANDO7ORLD /RLANDO &, 53!


Seventh: Increasing process streamlining to maximize the efficiency of each dollar spent in the federal funding process

The stakes are high. If we donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t act now, the problems will only get worse.

APWA has launched WorkZone with NEW features to make your job of finding or posting a job more powerful. The enhanced site features include bulk pricing, mapping function, tailored job search agents, free internship postings… and more. WorkZone is the exclusive site for employers to connect with job seekers in a more personal way. Check out the major upgrades and benefit from the more powerful, more personal service.


FOR EMPLOYERS: Now more than ever, WorkZone is the exclusive gateway to the most qualified candidates for public works positions. Posting is quicker and easier than ever, and your job openings will go online immediately—still giving you that competitive edge.

Get the latest jobs & internships delivered to your e-mail. Or find helpful tips and other information to enhance career marketability all with the click of the mouse. Bulk Pricing Plan Employers can save by using the bulk pricing plan. Savings are based on the quantity of prepaid postings. Internships At no cost, APWA provides employers with a new recruitment vehicle and students with a new path to careers in public works.

For an additional $250 and a simple click of a button, gain additional exposure for your position when you include your job opening in APWA’s Reporter magazine. APWA’s Reporter reaches more than 30,000 professionals monthly!

FOR JOB SEEKERS: Job searching on WorkZone is still free and you can still conduct targeted searches using keywords, job titles, and locations. You can even get a map of public works positions near you with our new map feature powered by Google . ®

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You can search or post jobs directly from the APWA WorkZone homepage.

Funding alternatives for transportation projects John T. Davis, P.E. Chief Engineer Jacksonville Transportation Authority Jacksonville, Florida Member, APWA Transportation Committee his article is not intended to provide the ultimate solutions to transportation funding needs of our nation, but rather to identify a number of funding alternatives which are being used or considered by some government agencies and may warrant consideration by all local, state and federal governments to contribute to those solutions.

The Problem The National Surface Transportation Policy and Revenue Study Commission (Revenue Commission), created by the U.S. Congress through the 2005 SAFETEA-LU legislation, has estimated that it will require investments of between $225 billion and $340 billion annually over the next 50 years to repair, maintain and improve surface transportation (highways, bridges, public transit, freight rail and intercity pas-

senger rail). If the average of those two estimates is used and the current rate of $86 billion annual investment from all sources (over the past 10 years, the federal government has provided 45 percent of the total funding, while state and local governments and the private sector have provided the other 55 percent) is applied, we are currently investing less than one-third of the funding required to maintain, operate and improve our nation’s transportation system—we need to invest another $200 billion per year. In order to keep our nation competitive in the global market, maintain a strong economy and maintain our quality of life, we have no choice but to make those necessary investments. But, how are we to obtain such funding?

Motor Fuel Tax The traditional, primary user fee method of providing transportation funding has been through motor fuel taxes. Federal fuel taxes (gas taxes of 18.4 cents and diesel taxes of 24.4 cents per gallon) provide 90 percent of the federal Highway Trust Fund revenues. For most states and local governments, fuel taxes also provide the majority of transportation funding. However, federal fuel taxes have not changed since 1993. Many analysts cite that the consumer price index (CPI, as a measure of the cost of living) has increased by 47 percent (Oct. 1993–Apr. 2008) since that time. However, a more appropriate comparison might be provided by the cost of highway construction (per U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Producers Price Index for Highway and Street Construction), which has increased by 94 percent (Oct. 1993–Apr. 2008) and decreased the purchasing power of the federal gas tax by almost 50 percent (compounded even more by the recent significant increases in oil prices) (see Figure 1).


APWA Reporter

July 2008

Figure 1

Of course, federal fuel taxes are not the only fuel taxes in use. According to the American Petroleum Institute, in addition to the federal gas tax of 18.4 cents, state gas taxes account for an average of 25.44 cents per gallon (Alaska is the lowest at 8 cents and California is the highest at 45.5 cents), for a total average gas tax of 43.84 cents per gallon. Unlike the federal gas tax, a number of states have indexed their gas taxes to the CPI, so the taxes increase with inflation. Local governments also levy small levels of “local option” gas taxes. Even with these layers of gas taxes, U.S. gas prices are far lower than those of most other countries, and the average fuel efficiency of our light vehicles is also lower. Figure 2, courtesy of Florida Trend magazine, March 2008 issue’s article, “AutoNation’s Accelerator,” shows how U.S. gas prices and fuel efficiency compare with those of Europe and Japan. According to the Energy Information Agency (Feb. 2008), U.S. gas taxes are less than 10 percent of gas taxes for major European countries. Even with the additional 40 cents per gallon gas tax recommended by the Revenue Commission, U.S. gas taxes (and total gas prices) would still be far less than those of Europe and Japan, and it would appear our vehicle fuel efficiency would increase.

Gas Prices vs. Fuel Efficiency June 1, 2007 $6.14


a gallon

Tax $4.11



a gallon



a gallon

36 MPG $2.03


$0.40 $2.36

31 MPG


$2.65 21 MPG


Figure 2

The fact that fuel taxes have not been increased with inflation has substantially reduced their effectiveness as a “user fee” and capacity to fund needed transportation improvements. But, in spite of the “political incorrectness” of increasing them, fuel taxes appear to remain the primary and most viable transportation funding source at this time. In a 2006 study, The Fuel Tax and Alternatives for Transportation Funding, the Transportation Research Board (TRB) indicated fuel taxes would continue to be a viable Highway Trust Fund source for at least the next 15 years. However, with the fuel usage flattening (and anticipated to decrease) and increases

in vehicle fuel efficiencies, the fuel tax will become less effective as a funding source.

Soutel Drive Railroad Overpass Construction, Jacksonville, Florida

Tolls and Congestion Pricing Tolls and related fees are some of the most direct user fees, where the motorist pays in direct proportion to the use derived from the transportation facility. Entering and exiting toll facilities have become much more efficient with the advent of “open road” tolling, utilizing electronic toll collection systems, which significantly reduce delay to vehicles passing through toll collection areas. Tolling enables a transportation project to be financed and built today, with the “mortgage” being paid over the useful life of the project by its users. Toll roads, as we know them today, began in the U.S. in the 1920s. The Holland Tunnel in New York was completed in the mid-1920s; the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco in the 1930s. The first segment of the Pennsylvania Turnpike opened in October 1940. The 1956 Federal-Aid Highway Act allowed toll facilities on the interstate system, but prohibited federal funds from being used on them. FHWA’s 2007 Toll Facilities in the United States reports that 31 states have 4,918 miles of toll facilities, with tolls accounting for approximately 5 percent ($7.75 billion in 2005) of total highway revenues. The Revenue Commission Report indicates that 30 to 40 percent of new access-controlled expressways constructed in the past 10 years have been toll roads, according to a recent FHWA study. Analysts estimate that toll facility revenues could be increased to 7 percent of total highway revenues over the next 15 years. Due to the shortage of available transportation funding, it is clear that most highway facilities that have been economically viable have been constructed as toll facilities. These projects come in the form of projects that are totally funded by toll revenues, projects partially funded by conventional funds and partially by toll revenues, and projects initially July 2008

APWA Reporter


funded by toll â&#x20AC;&#x153;profitsâ&#x20AC;? from other facilities and which later begin to generate funding for other facilities. Congestion pricing is a variation of tolling, generally involving a variable toll rate based on amount of congestion being experienced on the transportation facility at the time of use (i.e., higher toll rates during peak traffic times and lower for off-peak times). High-occupancy toll (HOT), express and truck-only toll (TOT) lanes, where motorists pay tolls to utilize relatively non-congested lanes, are forms of congestion pricing. Another form is â&#x20AC;&#x153;area-wideâ&#x20AC;? tolling, where vehicles must pay a substantial toll to enter a highly congested area, such as a downtown area. London has levied such a toll and reduced traffic by 30 percent, increased speed by 40 percent and utilized revenues to fund transit improvements. The Mayor of New York Cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s recent proposal, to charge $8 per day during peak hours in the Manhattan area and fund transit improvements, failed. More detailed information on tolling can be found at FHWAâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s website ( htm) and at the Reason Foundationâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s website (www.reason. org/transportation). The Reason Foundation report on The Role of Tolls in Financing 21st Century Highways (www.reason. org/ps359.pdf) may be of interest.

Public-Private Partnership (PPP or P3) Public-Private Partnerships, PPPâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s or P3â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s, are usually a variation of tolling, with the â&#x20AC;&#x153;Private Partnerâ&#x20AC;? providing the financing for the transportation project, and the â&#x20AC;&#x153;Publicâ&#x20AC;? users paying fees or tolls over time for the use of the facility, with the public agency owning the facility and the private sector partner constructing, operating and maintaining the facility over an extended time period of 30 to 99 years, depending on the lease arrangements. FHWA defines a PPP as a contractual agreement formed between a public agency and private sector entity under which the private sector assumes a greater role in the planning, financing, design, construction, operation and maintenance of a transportation facility, compared to traditional procurement methods. The private sector partner usually competes with other private companies for long-term contracts to develop, finance, deliver, operate and maintain major transportation facilities and recover their investments (and make their profits) through tolls. When the PPP involves construction of a new facility or the addition of new capacity to existing facilities, the project is usually referred to as a â&#x20AC;&#x153;greenfieldâ&#x20AC;? project. When the project involves a long-term concession (leasing) for an existing toll facility, the project is a â&#x20AC;&#x153;brownfieldâ&#x20AC;? project.


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APWA Reporter

July 2008

PPP’s have been used for several years in Europe, Australia and South America. FHWA’s PPP website ( gov/ppp) indicates that 23 states and one territory have legislation authorizing use of PPP approaches for transportation

Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) Vehicle Miles Traveled is a new, innovative, electronic user fee system, in which vehicles are tracked via a Global Positioning System (GPS) and charged a fee based on the number of miles traveled instead of a gas tax. The system allows charging of different fees for peak and off-peak travel time, congested and non-congested travel routes, urban and rural area miles, and fuel-efficient vs. less-efficient vehicles. Data is collected by the GPS unit installed in the vehicle and downloaded at the fuel pump when refueling, where the system prints a bill detailing the miles traveled under the different rates. A pilot program, conducted by the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) and completed in 2007, went well. Some problem issues identified included cost and time to convert from the current gas tax fee system to a VMT system and perceived privacy issues by users. Information on ODOT’s Road User Fee Pilot Program, as well as a copy of the final report, is available at OIPP/mileage.shtml.

Regency Bypass Interchange Construction, Jacksonville, Florida

projects. Interest is picking up in the U.S., where greenfield projects are underway or in operation in Texas, California and Virginia and under consideration in several other states, including Florida; and several brownfield (concession) projects have recently been bid and awarded in Chicago, Indiana, Virginia and Pennsylvania. PPP’s are very complex contracts. Public agencies should engage the services of knowledgeable, experienced and trusted legal and financial teams to assist them in the process. Additional information can be found at The National Council for Public-Private Partnerships’ website (www.ncppp. org/howpart/index.shtml#define). The Reason Foundation has published studies on Building New Roads through PublicPrivate Partnerships: Frequently Asked Questions (www.reason. org/pb58_building_new_roads.pdf) and Leasing State Toll Roads: Frequently Asked Questions ( building_new_roads.pdf).

Impact Fees Transportation Impact Fees generally are one-time charges levied upon new development to pay for construction of or improvements to offsite transportation facilities, which are required by and benefit the new development. They are usually based on formulae that project the amount of traffic impact from the development to affected transportation facilities and use those traffic numbers to prorate a portion of estimated costs of any necessary transportation improvements to the development. Transportation fees from one development usually do not fund the total costs of facility improvements. Sometimes referred to as fair share, facility or development fees, the National Impact Fee Survey: 2007 ( indicates 27 states have legislation allowing implementation of impact fees.

After 10 years of research, the University of Iowa Public Policy Center is scheduled to begin the final phase of their Mileage-Based Road User Charge Study, a two-year fieldtesting program in six locations around the U.S., in 2008. A copy of their initial report can be found at http://ppc.uiowa. edu/dnn4/TransportationbrPolicyResearch/RoadUserChargeStudy/tabid/65/Default.aspx.

State Infrastructure Bank (SIB) Funding In 2005, thirty-two state departments of transportation had established SIB funding mechanisms, with state loans funding at low or no interest to governmental agencies for transportation projects. The repayments of these loans are returned to the SIB loan pool and reused for future loans (a revolving loan program). Federal transportation legislation provides for the establishment of SIBs and allows federal seed funding for such banks. More information on SIBs can be found at mechanisms/state_credit/statecredit.asp.

Other Local Funding Of course, local property taxes and other general fund revenues may be used to fund transportation projects. Competition for those funds from public safety (law enforcement and fire protection) and other local government needs are high and increasing significantly. Local Option Gas Taxes are a common method of funding transportation projects. These taxes are generally able to be added by a majority vote of the local elected officials (usually the county elected body). A common use of these revenues is transportation facility maintenance. Local Option Sales Taxes are also a common method of funding transportation projects. Generally, these taxes require a July 2008

APWA Reporter


majority vote of the community and are levied for a specific time period and for a specified purpose(s). Local governments also levy transportation fees, such as transportation utility fees (similar to stormwater fee approach) and special assessments. Some implement Special Taxing Districts and utilize a portion of the revenues for transportation projects. Tax Incremental Financing (TIF) districts, where increased property tax revenues from new development or redevelopment, above the â&#x20AC;&#x153;baseâ&#x20AC;? level of tax revenues received prior to implementation of the TIF, are used to finance infrastructure constructed to encourage and serve the new development. A new potential transportation revenue source being considered by Congress is a â&#x20AC;&#x153;container feeâ&#x20AC;? to fund security measures and transportation infrastructure to support containerized imported and exported seaborne freight.

Additional Information The National Surface Transportation Policy and Revenue Commission Study Commission report and other Commission information can be found at The Transportation Research Board has published studies on The Fuel Tax and Alternatives for Transportation Funding (http:// and the Future Financing Options to Meet Highway and Transit Needs (http:// AASHTOâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s website for Innovative Financing for Surface Transportation provides a wealth of information on financing and funding alternatives (

Bottom Line With the substantial increases in the costs of maintaining and providing transportation facilities, the increasing need for congestion relief, and the increasing competition among all governmental services for available funding, the traditional funding source of motor fuel taxes alone will not provide the funding needed for transportation. No one or two sources will suffice. It will require a combination of all available funding sources and some not yet identified. We must become more innovative in our approaches to funding. We must prioritize our needs and use every available, practical tool in the â&#x20AC;&#x153;funding toolboxâ&#x20AC;? to satisfy as many of our communitiesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; and countryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s transportation needs as possible. The communities we serve are depending on us. John T. Davis is a former member of APWAâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Government Affairs and Leadership & Management Committees. He can be reached at (904) 630-3169 or

Unique Snow Fighters and Snow Flakes Have One Thing in Commonâ&#x20AC;Ś





2009 APWA North American Snow Conference Call for Speakers 46

APWA Reporter

July 2008

APWA goes green! Debbie Hale Executive Director Transportation Agency for Monterey County Salinas, California Chair, APWA Sustainable Communities Subcommittee his spring, in keeping with the season, APWA is growing greener. The Transportation Committee is building on its earlier work to advance “smart growth,” context-sensitive road design, and related topics to explore how APWA can most effectively address the issues of transportation and sustainable communities. I am chairing a subcommittee charged with defining what we should be doing and then pursuing the tasks. More recently, recognizing the breadth and significance of the issues, President Larry Frevert announced formation of a new APWA task force to follow up on the success of the association’s “Climate Change Symposium” held April 9-10, in Tempe, Arizona. In this article, I’ll focus on the work of the subcommittee. Evidence of the relationship between transportation and sustainability is persuasive. As the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association reasons, “Since transportation uses twothirds of all the oil in the U.S., and it emits 60-90% of the urban air pollution and one-third of the climate change emissions, changing how we get around and the fuels we use are key to reaching the goal of a sustainable energy system.” “Changing how we get around and the fuels we use” can encompass a wide range of actions intended to reduce our total energy consumption. The following strategies top many lists: •

Increasing the convenience of mass transit;

Creating communities that make walking and bicycling more convenient as well as designing roads that make bicycling and walking safer;

Utilizing less polluting fuels and higher mileage vehicles;

Incorporating recycled materials into construction projects; and,

Using less energy in our public works operations.

to make transportation in your community more sustainable. Carl Sedoryk, General Manager of the Monterey-Salinas Transit District, will talk about their innovative program to convert their fleet to biodiesel using locally-grown crops that are produced in the off-season at a Monterey County vineyard. We will learn how their plan will lower emissions as well as reduce fuel costs, while supporting local agriculture—without impacting food prices! Mr. Sedoryk will be on hand to share their secrets (such as federal tax credits!), nightmares (what if the biodiesel crops fail?) and talk about how you can do this at home. If you are interested in the topic and especially if you are working on green projects that you’d like to share with your colleagues, now is the time to join the Sustainable Communities Subcommittee. At this point, the committee is just forming and we are looking for new members. Plan to attend our workshop at Congress, and afterwards prospective subcommittee members can get more information. We plan to coordinate with the new task force and the Technical Committee that we expect will grow out of the task force’s work. APWA Past President Ron Norris, Public Works Director for Lenexa, Kansas, is spearheading that effort. Even if you do not have the inclination or time to be deeply involved, we would like to hear from you. What are the primary concerns in your community? How can we disseminate the best ideas to our membership? What are the pitfalls that can be avoided with some of these new strategies? Is there money available for some of these projects? Contact me with your ideas now and let’s kick off the discussion at Congress after the session on August 19. Debbie Hale is the Executive Director for the Transportation Agency for Monterey County, California. She also serves as the Secretary for the APWA Monterey Bay Chapter. She can be reached at (831) 775-0903 or

At the APWA National Congress in New Orleans, we’ll be holding a session called “Global Warming and Transportation: Greening Your Fleet” on Tuesday, August 19 at 1:30 p.m. The session will explore a few of the latest ideas on how

July 2008

APWA Reporter


Public-Private Partnership on a Local Level Jeff Ramsey Public Works Director City of Auburn, Alabama Member, APWA Transportation Committee any projects are being constructed on the state and federal levels using public-private partnerships for funding. The City of Chicago partnered with a private company to take over an existing roadway and convert it into a toll road. In Las Vegas, a monorail is being constructed through a public-private partnership. Texas State Highway 130 is a design-build public-private partnership. In Alabama, two new bridges have been constructed to help relieve congestion through the use of a public-private partnership. More examples of large federal and state public-private partnerships can be seen on the Federal Highway Administration website, www.fhwa. There are opportunities for public-private partnerships on the local level, as well. We have to know where to look for these opportunities. Public officials in municipalities must be open to the use of these partnerships as a nontraditional way of funding in-


APWA Reporter

July 2008

frastructure projects. The City of Auburn in Alabama is a growing community. In fact, Auburn was the 74th fastest growing Metropolitan Statistical Area from July 1, 2006 to July 1, 2007 according to the U.S. Census Bureauâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s March 27, 2008 news release. As with most growing communities, there are infrastructure needs that must be addressed as the community grows. We have partnered with developers to install the needed infrastructure as they construct their developments. In most cases, the infrastructure is installed at the developerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s expense or as part of a cost-sharing project. As a new development warrants streets to be widened, traffic signals to be installed, or new water or sewer lines to be extended, we work with the developer to ensure these issues are addressed as part of the development. Once developers understand that their developments are the basis for the needed improvements, they are usually receptive to participating in the cost of the construction. We feel that

new development should pay for itself. The current citizenship should not be expected to fund infrastructure improvements for new developments. Over the past three years, the owners of 29 new developments contributed to needed infrastructure construction or upgrades. We had two miles of dirt roads paved, three miles of sewer line extended to new development, two miles of water lines extended and five traffic signals installed using public-private partnership agreements with new developments. The negotiations were not always easy but worth the effort when they resulted in having the needed infrastructure in place as the project was being constructed. We require that the developer provide us with an analysis of the infrastructure needs before construction of the project is allowed to begin. This could include a sewer line capacity evaluation, water line fire flow calculation, or a traffic study. Based on these analyses, we determine what infrastructure is needed in order to proceed with the development. In some cases there is no water line or sewer main in the area that is being proposed for development. In those cases we work with developers to come up with ways to extend the service. When the development is located in an area in which the City has not planned to extend utilities in the near future, we require the developer to pay the full cost of running the utilities to the property. If we have plans to extend utilities to a specific area and a developer needs service to that area, we do a cost-share project and add a surcharge to the area to help pay for the utility extension. In most cases the developers are willing to work with the City for utility extensions and upgrades. They realize that developments cannot be constructed and sold without utility services. Traffic issues are more subjective and therefore more controversial in nature. Once we have the Traffic Impact Study that outlines the deficiencies, we work with the developer to address these areas of concerns. Many times an existing intersection will warrant a new traffic signal, additional turn lanes and, in some cases, additional lanes. Many times the developer will argue that the existing traffic is cause for the problem and that his additional traffic should not be made to pay for improvements. Often we must help the developer to understand why improvements must be made prior to allowing new development. The City cannot allow new development to make a traffic situation worse, and therefore improvements must be made to keep the level of service from dropping. We have had instances where the developer paid for new traffic signals, added turn lanes and paved dirt roads, and all the improvements were justified by the Traffic Impact Study. All of these partnerships to build new infrastructure were the results of public-private partnerships that were formalized in a development agreement between the City and the developer. The development agreement spells out what infrastructure is to be constructed, who will pay for the improvements, and the timeframe in which the improvements

are to be made. The development agreement is signed by the developer and approved by the City Council. Alabama State Code does not allow municipalities to assess impact fees to new development. Without the development agreement process, the cost of improvements to public infrastructure would all be borne by the citizens of our community. Another trend that public works professionals will need to keep their eyes on is that of private companies taking over the management and operation of the traditional public works department. We are seeing private companies operate our water and sewer treatment plants, provide garbage and trash collection, roadway maintenance, parks maintenance and landfill services. Those of us in the public sector need to be aware that if we cannot provide quality services at a competitive price, there is a private entrepreneur waiting to do our jobs for us. The citizens of our communities desire the best service possible and if we are not providing it, our communities need an alternative in the form of a publicprivate partnership. I feel public-private partnerships will play an even greater role in public works in the future. We need to be aware of the partnership opportunities that can help a local government achieve its goals. The citizens of our communities deserve the best services possible. With todayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s high cost of providing services, local governments will turn to publicprivate partnerships to accomplish their goals. Jeff Ramsey can be reached at (334) 501-3000 or jramsey@

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APWA Reporter


Research pays off for transportation Andy Lemer, Ph.D., Senior Program Officer, Transportation Research Board, Washington, D.C., and Chair, APWA Transportation Committee; William Reichmuth, P.E., Deputy City Manager, Plans and Public Works, City of Monterey, California, and member, APWA Transportation Committee

esearch is an effort to find new knowledge, to gain understanding of how things work, and to devise better ways to do things. The results of research, applied to solving specific problems or sometimes serendipitously, can save us money and time and improve public works performance. There is no definitive reporting of total research effort devoted to transportation public works in the United States, but the amount spent annually may exceed $1 billion. A 2001 Transportation Research Board report estimated that federal and state government research and development (R&D) spending for highway research is nearly $750 million. Total U.S. research spending for highways, including technology transfer and other activities that promote innovation in the

field, public and private, amounts to less than 0.7 percent of total highway expenditures by U.S. highway agencies. This sum, while not insignificant, is peanuts compared to research spending in, for example, drugs or telecommunications. (According to a Congressional Budget Office report, the federal government alone spent more than $25 billion on health-related R&D in 2005; private drug companies’ research spending is added to that.) It is not unusual for companies in high-tech businesses to set research budgets at 7 to 10 percent of their annual sales, and even relatively mature industries (such as basic materials, machinery and chemicals manufacturing) seem to devote 1 to 3 percent of their net sales to research.

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APWA Reporter

July 2008

Even with relatively low spending, transportation research can pay off, even for small local agencies that would not dream of asking their mayors, councils or county executives for research and development funds. A big part of research is spreading the word about useful results, and that is where APWA plays a role. As members of the APWA Transportation Committee, we have opportunities to see new technologies coming out of the research labs and ready for the market. Following are a couple of recent examples.

Signals of Change: ACS-Lite Traffic signals and the design of arterial facilities affect us daily as we travel to and from work, school, shopping and recreational facilities. There are an estimated 272,000 traffic signals in the United States and each has a profound impact on how safely and efficiently we share the space of intersections as we travel to our destinations. In many major metropolitan areas, the freeway system is functioning at or beyond the capacity for which it was designed. Many drivers are choosing to use arterial streets as an alternative. The  growing demand on arterial systems creates congestion on the thoroughfares that define our cities and suburbs. We are finding that a significant portion of traffic delays on arterial routes results from outdated or poor traffic signal timing. Innovative signal timing techniques can reduce this congestion by improving traffic flow. One of these innovative timing systems is ACS-Lite, a scaleddown version of the Federal Highway Administration’s (FHWA) Adaptive Control Software (ACS), developed by FHWA in partnership with Siemens, the University of Arizona and Purdue University. The software is licensed by Siemens and has been integrated by four traffic signal controller manufacturers to operate with their systems. Traffic controller manufacturers Eagle, Econolite, McCain and Peek currently have licenses to integrate the software with their devices. Field-test sites have been completed to validate the operability of ACS-Lite with each of the manufacturers’ control systems. Each of the field tests produced positive results relative to the effectiveness of the existing traffic signal timing. So what is ACS-Lite, and what does it do? Primarily, the technology is the software that resides on a field-hardened CPU physically located with the field master controller. The ACS-Lite software interacts with intersection controller in the closed loop to determine traffic flow and signal timing parameters and may provide updates to the signal timing on a cycle basis. ACS-Lite recognizes, records and responds to trends and shifts in traffic demand to keep the signal timing up-to-date, reducing the need for complete signal retiming. The system’s attractions include low cost, compatibility with existing closed-loop systems, and performance improvements from real-time signal-timing adjustment. Experience

to date indicates ACS-Lite is easily configured and calibrated and locks in the performance gains of signal retiming.

Lighting the Way: Mobile Ground-based LIDAR Surveying an active road corridor is always challenging, and particularly so when lane closures and traffic disruptions must be minimized. Using truck-mounted LIDAR (Light Detection And Ranging) is emerging as a way to conduct surveys without slowing traffic. LIDAR works like radar but with lasers rather than radiofrequency transmitters to bounce a signal off the surfaces to be detected. Airborne LIDAR is now used in photogrammetry and a variety of mapping applications (for example, assessing ground-cover vegetation) and is being developed for surveys of obstructions near airfields that might interfere with aircraft operations. Ground-based LIDAR is used in conventional land surveying and is being explored, for example, as a way to assess damage to building façades caused by ground settlement. Generally speaking, LIDAR technology has shown itself to be practical and cost-effective for collecting data to determine floodplains, vegetation canopy and other aspects of landscape. Using it to survey pavement and right-of-way conditions is a new application.

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July 2008

APWA Reporter


The idea developed when contractors in Afghanistan were faced with the problems of reconstructing that country’s principal highway, a long-neglected and war-damaged ring road that traverses rugged terrain and connects the nation’s three major cities. During a first phase of work, crews using traditional methods needed 200 days to survey the road surface between Kabul and Kandahar. (Roadway resurfacing, funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development, reduced travel time on that 300-mile stretch from as much as 30 hours to 6 or less.)

People involved in the fieldwork learned later that the attempt to simulate Afghan conditions was “laughably inadequate.” The road surface on many segments of the 350-mile second phase route were so poor that the truck could travel no faster than 5 to 6 mph, well below the 60 mph rate at which the system can function. In any case, the experience proved that LIDAR can produce accurate survey data at rates far greater than traditional methods and without requiring obstruction of traffic flow. Terrapoint has subsequently begun to market their LIDAR system in North America.

A Canadian firm, Terrapoint, proposed to use their helicopter-mounted LIDAR system to speed up the corridor survey for the second phase of the project, but military experts advised that an airborne effort would be too dangerous. The company revived a scheme it had previously developed to the proof-of-concept stage but had set aside for lack of immediate demand. The company’s engineers developed a system for mounting their equipment on a small flatbed truck. They tested the system in Canada, attempting to simulate the conditions they expected to encounter in Afghanistan, and found that everything worked well.

Tests of the system’s accuracy have been included in work in conjunction with a design-build highway project for the Washington State DOT. David Evans and Associates (DEA), a design firm working as part of the design-build team, compared the results of Terrapoint’s system with those produced by more conventional survey methods. DEA employed the truck-mounted system on a four-mile section of freeway to assess the horizontal and vertical accuracy of the mobile scanner data. The collected data were compared directly to information gathered with a terrestrial static LIDAR system. The accuracy assessment was completed by creating highdensity digital terrain models from each data set. The two

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APWA Reporter

July 2008

models were then compared by calculating the vertical differences on a 1-foot grid sampling. Based on the results of these measurements, DEA concluded that Terrapoint’s technology is able to achieve accuracies suitable for design surveys. Terrapoint reports that their system has also been used on projects for the ministries of transport in British Columbia and Ontario, and has also been applied for surveying airport runway and apron pavement. Despite the obvious advantages of being able to survey a roadway without significantly disrupting traffic flows, the system has drawbacks. LIDAR data files are very large, straining the capabilities of many CAD systems, and the data itself must be edited to remove erroneous laser returns from treetops, cars, birds, buildings, tops of brush, etc. to identify bare-ground final terrain. On the other hand, the data may be used to inventory such items as signs and signal standards. On balance, the technology appears to be attractive for many applications.

Getting in Touch with New Technology These two examples, and any other new technology, are simply tools that may be useful for doing a specific job. They

may not be suitable for every problem, but they are worth considering. With further development, any new technologies may become suitable for a wider range of applications. As is the case with any new tool, users must consider the specific requirements of the job at hand when they decide which tool to use. For public works professionals, staying on top of marketready technology means doing our business better, quicker and cheaper, which translates into serving our residents better. One great resource for learning more about new technology you can use is FHWA’s online Resource Center (http:// cfm). The Center’s website includes names and contact information for FHWA staffers around the country who can help solve specific problems. Andy Lemer is a former member of the Government Affairs and Leadership & Management Committees; he can be reached at (202) 334-3972 or William Reichmuth is a member of the SAFETEA-LU Task Force and former member of the Water Resources Management Committee; he can be reached at (831) 646-3920 or

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APWA Reporter


Don’t miss out: Cost-effective training and technical assistance available—and help for your chapter, too Lisa Harris Editor, KS LTAP Kansas University Transportation Center Lawrence, Kansas re you taking advantage of all the low-cost training and technical assistance opportunities available to you? If you or your staff are not using LTAP services, the answer is NO!

tribal governments (served by “TTAPs”), boroughs, parishes, hamlets, you name it. Contractors who work on roads and bridges for these communities are also included.

LTAP, which stands for Local Technical Assistance Program (sometimes referred to as “T2” for technology transfer), is a publicly-funded program specifically for public works agencies and local road and bridge departments. Every road and bridge or engineering department in the United States has an LTAP Center that serves it. Find yours at, using the “Center Locator.” LTAP Centers are usually located in a university or in the state DOT. Each LTAP Center provides, at minimum: •

Face-to-face training tailored to the needs of your area

A quarterly newsletter with timely transportation articles

Publications and training materials for loan or free distribution

A website with training schedules and links to technical information for local agencies

These transportation-related services can supplement the information and educational opportunities available to you from APWA. LTAP’s primary focus areas are: •

Roadway safety (design, signs and pavement markings, road safety audits, etc.)

Road crew safety

Infrastructure management and maintenance

“Soft” skills (management, communication, leadership, understanding regulations)

Workforce development, including bringing new workers to the workplace through events such as construction career days

LTAP was created by the Federal Highway Administration 25 years ago with the realization that all roads are part of the national transportation system, including local roads—and all who work on them (or manage them) need training and access to resources and technical assistance. LTAP Centers have customers at the state level and in cities, counties, townships, 54

APWA Reporter

July 2008

LTAP and TTAP centers offer training and technical assistance. Here, local government participants learn effective asphalt maintenance techniques at an LTAP workshop in New York State.

LTAP Centers are not one-size-fits-all. That’s because local needs vary a great deal across the country. Some areas need more training on gravel road maintenance, others on congestion management and traffic engineering. Some need snow maintenance training; others, like Florida and Hawaii, not so much. The program is designed to be flexible, allowing each state LTAP Center the independence to provide the services that are truly needed in a given area. An advisory board, with local representatives (and probably an APWA member), helps develop most Centers’ programs. Costs for LTAP Center services also vary, but LTAP strives to provide training and other services to local agencies at the lowest cost possible. Some training programs may actually be free and many LTAPs offer lunch as part of the deal! How many local government personnel already receive LTAP training? You might be surprised. LTAP and TTAP Centers trained nearly 100,000 individuals from local governments in just one year (2007 data). LTAP and TTAP newsletters reach over 230,000 local government recipients. Which just goes to show that a lot of people are using LTAP services. But are you?

Using LTAP services, as an individual or agency If you are not already an LTAP customer, here is a checklist of easy ways to get plugged in. Getting access to information about LTAP will take just a few minutes of your time

and could result in more training and information for you and your staff—all of which could result in better safety and lower cost of operations for your department. Most of these services can be accessed by simply calling or e-mailing the LTAP Center near you. •

Get your name on the mailing list for the Center that serves your area. You will receive information on upcoming training in your area and a quarterly newsletter on road and bridge topics.

If your LTAP Center has a listserv, sign up for that. It can supplement the conversations you currently have with your APWA infoNOW Communities.

Take some classes. Or better yet, sign up for your LTAP’s road scholar program, if they have one. Sign up your whole crew! Some cities are using road scholar certification as a basis for raises and promotions.

Order some materials from your LTAP Center’s catalog of library resources. Many are available for you to keep—for free.

• •

city participants for attending a series of workshops on technical, supervisory or executive skills. Chapter representatives serve on the statewide committee that develops curricula for the courses. Kansas LTAP provides some of the courses and overall coordination for the program. For more information on the program and its other partners, see the January 2008 issue of the APWA Reporter (“SCRC spotlight on the Kansas Road Scholar Program,” p. 22 – Ed.). •

The Louisiana LTAP participates on the Board of the Louisiana Chapter and helps to provide educational speakers and resources to events such as the crawfish boil to celebrate National Public Works Week.

Add your LTAP Center’s website to your URL favorites, and check the site on a regular basis.

The Nebaska LTAP does much of the legwork for the Nebraska Chapter’s annual meeting, helps develop and provide speakers for the program, and also provides audio/visual support for chapter events throughout the year. The Nebraska LTAP Director is a Chapter Education Committee Member and the LTAP Center coordinates a yearly scholarship for the chapter. Nebraska LTAP hosts Click, Listen & Learn programs requested by chapter members.

Request a special class or service. Many LTAP and TTAP Centers offer onsite low-cost workshops or technical assistance upon request. Many Centers also perform or teach road safety audits and some have safety circuit riders that can travel to your location.

The Connecticut LTAP serves on the New England Chapter’s education committee and mutual aid committee, includes a quarterly chapter update in their LTAP newsletter, and is exploring opportunities to cosponsor trainings.

The Michigan LTAP co-hosted the North American Snow Conference when it was in Traverse City, Michigan.

These are just a few examples of the great cooperative efforts LTAP Centers have with APWA chapters across the U.S. In fact, in a survey conducted a few years ago, 32 of the 58 LTAP and TTAP Centers reported a “close” or “very close” relationship with their local APWA chapters. For more information on LTAP and TTAP, visit, or call Dan Cady, Director of the Nebraska LTAP, at (402) 472-5748. Dan is the current Liaison for the LTAP Centers to APWA. We welcome any opportunity to help APWA members “tap” into LTAP services. After all, your federal and state taxes pay for LTAP services—so take advantage of them! LTAP and TTAP centers help APWA chapters in a variety of ways. Here, Dan Cady, Director of the Nebraska LTAP, judges a loader contest at an APWA Snow Roadeo.

Did you know?

Using LTAP services, as a chapter LTAP and APWA have a similar client base and some similar goals. There are great opportunities for collaboration. APWA and LTAP have a partnership at the national level and many LTAP Centers also work cooperatively with APWA chapters. Some examples: •

Lisa Harris can be reached at (785) 864-2590 or

The Kansas LTAP partners with the Kansas Chapter and others to deliver the Kansas Road Scholar Program to cities. The chapter provides road scholar certificates to

The LTAP and TTAP Centers have a national association—the National LTAP Association (NLTAPA). Two of the association’s primary efforts are developing training and products for LTAP customers (like yourself) and professional development for LTAP staff. NLTAPA has also been asked to participate in several of APWA’s national committees and has full committee members on APWA’s Education Committee and Fleet Services Committee. NLTAPA is an official partner of APWA, and also of NACE and AASHTO.

July 2008

APWA Reporter


Partnering plus “Three E’s” equals recycling success Jason Harrington, Recycling Technology Engineer, and Bill Bolles, Marketing Specialist, Federal Highway Administration, Washington, D.C.

e at the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) know that in overseeing our nation’s highways and bridges, we must also be stewards of the environment that is impacted by those highways. FHWA has been very active in promoting various industrial by-products to be used as alternative materials for highway and bridge construction. We want to keep spreading the word to the road construction community that the engineering feasibility and environmental soundness of using recycled materials has been confirmed in research, field studies, experimental projects and long-term performance testing and analysis. By correctly applying the principles of engineering, environment and economics—the three E’s—an agency can help ensure the overall successful use of recycled materials in their programs.

Partnering makes recycling happen Creating and using partnerships can make recycling programs more effective and efficient. Partnering helps differ-

Three E’s of Recycling Engineering feasibility. A project will need to perform as designed and provide acceptable service over the life of the design. FHWA does not want to incorporate a material or process that will adversely impact the service life of a highway. Environmental soundness. The project’s elements should not impact the local human and natural environment. The U.S. EPA and the various state environmental regulators are excellent sources of technical information on using industrial by-products for highway construction materials. Economic efficiency. The materials being used should not be cost-prohibitive. But initial cost should not be the sole consideration because enhanced performance or reduced maintenance needs over time can result in overall cost savings. Other cost savings associated with using recycled materials are lower disposal fees and landfill conservation of space. Other potential benefits are reduced greenhouse gas production, reduced energy costs and fewer impacts from not having to mine virgin materials. 56

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ent groups share information on the best recycling techniques for particular situations. And partners can carry this information, and the recycling message, to other parts. For instance, the Green Highways Partnership (GHP, www. has brought together many different groups—FHWA, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), other federal agencies, state transportation and environmental agencies, industry, trade associations, members of academia and contractors to encourage an environmentally friendly and systematic roadway planning, construction and maintenance program. In August 2007, the FHWA, EPA and the Industrial Resources Council sponsored a workshop entitled “Conserving Resources and Building Infrastructure with Recycled Materials” in Baltimore, Maryland. Eighty transportation professionals attended this workshop to learn more about the use of recycled materials and identify ways to implement them into everyday highway construction practices. During the workshop, representatives from Maryland reported that the state recycled more than one million tons of asphalt and concrete in 2005, as well as 145,000 tons of fly ash and more than 275,000 tons of construction debris. Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) reported that its transportation projects have included RCA, RAP, TDA, glass, granulated ground blast furnace slag, and fly ash. In Virginia, RCA has been used in embankments and as fill for roadway bases, and fly ash is regularly used as a cementitious material in Portland cement concrete, as a mineral filler in hot-mix asphalt (HMA), and in embankment construction. Attendees from Pennsylvania reported during the conference that it has used a range of recycled products in transportation applications, including fly ash as structural fill, scrap tires as lightweight embankment fill, and crumb rubber to modify the asphalt binder for HMA. Conference discussions produced a number of action items to be worked on. The states and GHP are to work to harmonize Mid-Atlantic Regional State specifications for using recycled materials. More demonstration of real-world applications of recycled materials in highway construction should be carried out. GHP Recycle/Reuse Team is working with VDOT to incorporate recycled materials into multiple

projects in 2009. “We are considering three possible project sites right now,” says Stan Hite, Assistant Materials Engineer for VDOT. “Recycled materials being considered for use include shredded tires, steel slag, asphalt shingles and foundry sand.” Other materials that will be considered are coal ash and paper mill sludge compost. Once projects have been selected, the GHP plans to showcase them in a 2009 workshop for the Mid-Atlantic States. One of the key recycling partners is the Recycled Materials Resource Center (RMRC), which is staffed by national experts in the area of industrial by-product materials used in recycling. The center is staffed by engineers from both the University of New Hampshire and the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and is an important source of information for agencies and contractors considering greater use of recycled materials. The RMRC systematically tests, evaluates and develops guidelines for the use of recycled materials in transportation infrastructure construction and maintenance. Visit the RMRC website ( where published research findings and technical information on the use of various by-products are posted.

Recycling successes continue to increase Each year, approximately 80 percent of 200 million tons of old asphalt roadways are milled and hauled offsite for processing to later be recycled into new Hot Mix Asphalt (HMA) or used in some other application for highway construction. The transportation industry leads others in this respect. For instance, the amount of municipal solid waste recycled yearly (cans, bottles and newspapers) is 82 million tons—only about half of the amount of asphalt roadway material being recycled. In addition, nearly 50 million tons of asphalt paving is being recycled-in-place, to be reused in the project. This inplace recycling process allows for 100 percent of roadway material to be reused while conserving resources of asphalt binder and aggregates, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions and fuel resources. FHWA has done several state-of-practice reviews on the use and benefits of recycling. Two of the recycling technologies that were reviewed, Recycled Concrete Aggregate (RCA) and Cold In-place Recycling, are particularly underutilized. Use of Reclaimed Asphalt Pavement (RAP) was studied to help encourage use of this material at a higher rate in HMA. The findings from the different reviews were encouraging in that more states and agencies are using the technology and some good practices were gathered up for the report. For instance, when looking at the rate of reuse of RAP in HMA, it was noted that the process is helping to reduce energy consumption by 29 trillion BTUs yearly. The amount of RAP used yearly in HMA production has avoided almost two million tons of carbon dioxide emissions.

Coal fly ash, a product of the burning of coal in power plants, is another material commonly recycled in roadways. Not only does fly ash replace structural fill in road construction, it also replaces a portion of the Portland cement that is used to make concrete. Currently 15 million tons of fly ash is used in place of cement, which reduces carbon dioxide emissions by 10.5 million tons. FHWA and the Asphalt Recycling and Reclaiming Association recently hosted the first regional in-place recycling workshop in Salt Lake City. More workshops are planned for the future. For more information on upcoming workshops, contact FHWA’s pavement recycling expert, Jason Harrington, at (202) 366-1576 or

Goals for the future of recycling In light of the rapidly rising cost of materials, as well as the diminishing supply of quality aggregates, recycling technologies are almost required in order to effectively and economically build, rehabilitate and preserve our nation’s highways. This issue alone is a major reason to take a closer look at recycling technologies and how they can be used in your program. We can’t stop here. We need to continue to provide the best resources, keep demonstrating beneficial uses and, through research, improve materials and technologies. Strong partnerships have been a big part of past success, and FHWA will do more to reach out to local agencies to share information, and encourage use of the various recycling technologies. The FHWA looks forward to working with APWA and their members for help in sharing recycling technologies so that highway industry can make an even bigger impact—on saving money, improving roads and helping to enhance the overall environment. For more information, contact FHWA’s Jason Harrington at (202-366-1576) or Jason.Harrington@

Government-wide Recognition for Recycling Success The FHWA was recently notified it had won the “Closing the Circle” award from the White House Office of the Federal Environmental Executive. This prestigious award recognizes outstanding achievements by federal employees and agencies for efforts that resulted in significant contributions to positive impacts regarding environmental stewardship. FHWA received the award in recognition of the efforts of staff members at many levels to help promote recycling technology across the nation, working with partners across the highway industry.

July 2008

APWA Reporter


Safe Routes to School Report Update Richard Deal, P.E., T.E., PTOE Traffic Engineer City of Monterey, California Representing APWA on the SRTS National Task Force The following article provides an update of the forthcoming Safe Routes to School Task Force Report. The report is currently in draft format and should be regarded as such. The 2005 federal transportation legislation, SAFETEA-LU, which provided $612 million for Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program funding, established a national task force charged with developing a strategy for advancing Safe Routes to School programs. The Legislature’s intent of the SRTS program was: 1. To enable and encourage children, including those with disabilities, to walk and bicycle to school; 2. To make bicycling and walking to school a safer and more appealing transportation alternative, thereby encouraging a healthy and active lifestyle from an early age; and 3. To facilitate the planning, development and implementation of projects and activities that will improve safety and reduce traffic, fuel consumption, and air pollution in the vicinity of schools. The SRTS National Task Force will present a final report to the U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary and Congress this summer. The report explains why SRTS is a critical component of the transportation system. Previous generations of Americans have made strides in technology, health and science that have advanced the well-being of those to follow. Despite many advances, we are documenting epidemic rates of obesity across the U.S. Children today are suffering health complications such as asthma, diabetes and cardiovascular disease at rates never before seen in history. Furthermore, vital natural resources are being compromised. Simultaneously, we have seen dramatic changes in the way we live and travel. Additionally, few children today are able

to fully enjoy the simple pleasure of walking and bicycling to school. As a result, traffic congestion is rising, the opportunity for routine physical activity is missed, and children don’t know their neighborhoods well. Through a combination of engineering treatments, traffic enforcement, safety education and encouragement programs, families can return to a way of life that gets children to and from school more safely and efficiently, reduces traffic congestion, improves air quality and gets people moving again. The report highlights the vision of the Task Force: Safe Routes to School Programs will improve safety and encourage more American youth to walk and bicycle to school, thereby resulting in higher levels of physical activity, reduced traffic congestion, a cleaner environment and enhanced quality of life in our communities. Driven by this vision statement, the draft report recommends five strategies to sustain the momentum generated by the federal SRTS program and ensure that SRTS is a component of future legislation. They include: 1. Build on successful implementation strategies 2. Strengthen forthcoming transportation legislation 3. Encourage and support SRTS programs among other partners and stakeholders 4. Address other challenges that SRTS programs face 5. Advance innovative solutions that support SRTS efforts By ensuring continued support, SRTS can maintain its current progress, offering a way for children to become active participants in improving their health, the health of our environment, and the safety of their communities. SRTS is one part of a comprehensive solution that can leave the legacy we always intended. Richard Deal can be reached at (831) 646-3470 or deal@

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APWA Reporter

July 2008

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Toward Zero Deaths in Minnesota Richard West, P.E., County Highway Engineer, Otter Tail County, Minnesota, and Renae Kuehl, P.E., PTOE, Associate, SRF Consulting Group, Inc., Minneapolis, Minnesota

lmost everyone knows someone who has been in a serious traffic crash. It’s a tragic reality that occurs too often. In 2006, 42,463 people died in the United States as the result of traffic-related crashes and 2.5 million more were injured. Put in perspective, an average of 116 people die every day or one person dies every 12 minutes in a traffic crash. Even though Minnesota consistently ranks among U.S. states with the lowest traffic fatality rates, Minnesota transportation stakeholders are adamant that fatalities and injuries on its roadways be reduced. The State has established a visionary “Toward Zero Deaths (TZD)” campaign to spearhead this goal. With a mission to reduce fatalities and injuries on Minnesota’s roads to zero, the campaign focuses on raising awareness of traffic safety issues and promoting strategies for engineers, law enforcement, educators and emergency medical services to use to reduce death and injury on Minnesota roadways. TZD is an umbrella partnership that includes representatives from transportation stakeholders throughout Minnesota such as the Minnesota Departments of Transportation (Mn/DOT) and Public Safety, Federal Highway Administration and the Center for Transportation Studies at the University of Minnesota, as well as representatives from many local agencies.

Karen Sprattler of SRF Consulting Group, Inc., Minneapolis, Minn., helping lead one of eight workshops held statewide

Minnesota’s Local Road Research Board (LRRB) and Mn/ DOT’s Division of State Aid for Local Transportation have also been instrumental in helping engineering stakeholders 60

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address safety concerns. Two of their recent efforts include the development and delivery of workshops focusing on Rural Road Safety Solutions and the development of the Minnesota Crash Mapping Analysis Tool. The Rural Road Safety Solutions workshops were developed to help local agencies foster an operational culture where the focus is safety and data drives safety decisions. A key message of the training was about the safety “revolution” afoot in Minnesota, whereby those responsible for roadways are asked to focus on low-cost prevention strategies that address traffic fatalities and serious injuries, rather than simply looking at overall crash rates. The mission of Minnesota’s Toward Zero Deaths Campaign is to move the State toward zero traffic deaths on our roads through the application of proactive safety strategies involving engineering, enforcement, education, emergency services, research activities and community involvement.

A total of eight workshops were presented throughout the State by a team that included the FHWA Safety Engineer for Minnesota, the Mn/ DOT State Traffic Safety Engineer, three county engineers and the consultant who developed the curricula. Attendees left with an understand- Locations of Rural Road ing of the many tools and Safety Workshops technologies available for the assessment and improvement of rural roads. Over 150 attendees from cities and counties attended the day-long workshops. The workshops provided information about highway safety trends at the national, state and local levels, discussed specific engineering strategies to improve safety, and provided information about funding and how to garner support for safety-related projects. The workshops received positive feedback and an overall enthusiastic response. “Having the diverse panel of speakers (FHWA, Mn/DOT,

Consultant, local County Engineer) provided a wide range of expertise and real-world experience, which was key in engaging the audience and delivering an important message of highway safety,” said John Brunkhorst, McLeod County Engineer and chair of the Minnesota County Engineers Association’s Safety Committee.

software useful in identifying crash trends. Wayne Sandberg, Deputy Director of Public Works for Washington County, said, “We need to know what kinds of crashes are happening on our roads, so we can work to eliminate them. This tool provides that information, in an easy-to-use format, that every safety professional can use.”

Another key initiative developed by the LRRB and Mn/ DOT State Aid is the Minnesota Crash Mapping Analysis Tool (MnCMAT), a software program that helps traffic safety professionals easily map and analyze crash data. Users can select a county or Screenshot from Minnesota Crash counties for analysis and Mapping Analysis Tool (MnCMAT) then narrow the focus by selecting crashes in a specific area. Up to 32 different driver and crash data filters can then be used to analyze various types of crash scenarios. By specifying certain crash attributes, users can analyze crash data and produce maps with plotted crash locations, charts, and automated crash reports based on the crash attributes that were selected. The MnCMAT software contains 10 years worth of detailed crash data on all roads for all 87 counties in Minnesota, making the

Minnesota will continue to prioritize safety advancements in order to reach its TZD goal. Understanding that good data must guide safety decisions, MnCMAT will continue to be improved to make it even more user-friendly, and a webbased application is being explored to provide greater access and functionality. Because of the positive response from practitioners, the LRRB is considering a second round of the Rural Road Safety Solution workshops. According to Bernie Arseneau, Mn/DOT’s top safety official, “The fatalities and serious injuries resulting from traffic crashes are tragic and completely unacceptable. By working together, utilizing the data, information and safety strategies that have become available, transportation and safety stakeholders throughout this state will help move Minnesota Toward Zero Deaths!”

Richard West can be reached at (218) 998-8470; Renae Kuehl can be reached at (763) 475-0010 or

July 2008

APWA Reporter


Wayne County, Michigan adopts state-ofthe-art roads management system Margaret Ray, PMP, RIMS Project Manager, Department of Technology; James A. Jackson, Director, Department of Public Services; and Craig Garrett, Department Communications Specialist, Wayne County, Michigan

ommon economic challenges faced by modern government must be measured against performance and transparency, especially as roads and bridges reach maturity and supply costs escalate. It’s a tough balancing act, with the solutions requiring thought, chalk time and strong leadership. But evolving technology is again proving to be a valuable tool in the quest to mind the checkbook and meet citizen needs. Wayne County, Michigan, is using agile new software, satellite and wireless technology in road maintenance, fleet management and cost reduction in its Department of Public Services. The Roads Infrastructure Management System (RIMS)

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July 2008

enables DPS staff to capture (near) real-time data on service requests, track requests to completion and utilize these data to assess and bolster service. As importantly, RIMS technology projects/tracks funding needs, critical in forecasting labor and supply costs. RIMS was launched during the first term of Wayne County Executive Robert Ficano, who realized the value of cost-effective technology as a way to improve performance and increase customer satisfaction. RIMS uses hand-held and vehicle devices via satellite and wireless technology to manage the flow of information. With the click of a button, County forestry staff, for example, use real-time data to inspect trees, help locate trees identified with disease or insects, and identify trimming and removal projects. Tracking also allows management to dispatch staff more quickly and efficiently in emergencies or other warranted occasions. Advanced technology can help service the mountain of demands of a $125-million budget, a fleet of cars, trucks and equipment, nearly a thousand workers and staff, and the vast network of suppliers. The department has already used technology to trim costs and balance the department’s budget. RIMS places Wayne County at the forefront of accountability. And there are dozens of RIMS applications that will help Wayne County trim costs even further and better manage services. RIMS testing will run through 2008. Full implementation will mean hundreds of vehicles and staff are equipped and servers are in place. Executive Ficano supports this and other service advances, noting in his State of the County remarks that the economic challenges in the Michigan economy can make it tough to predict future revenue and costs. Uncertainty is also rough on staff morale, the County Executive said. “Each year our County employees are asked to do more with less,” Ficano said. “Nonetheless, we are required, by County charter and existing ordinances, to provide certain services. Nowhere is this more prevalent than in our Department of Public Services, where we provide the residents and visitors of Wayne County road maintenance, County permitting and an exceptional park system.”

RIMS technology actually dates to 1997, when the County’s Department of Public Services first proposed a commercial system that would support management efforts to collect and report on County roadway assets and associate the work completed to maintain the assets, tracking corresponding labor costs, equipment and materials. The RIMS project is the result of years of study and careful consideration by the DPS Roads Division on how to streamline operations and reduce the amount of time spent on non-value driven tasks. Historically, the Roads Division had managed paper-based and electronic systems. Database applications, developed by Roads Division personnel for specialized functions, were not integrated or implemented to allow access and the sharing of data across the organization. As a result, data value was limited and additional time (man-hours) were being spent on hand-entering data from paper forms and manually transferring from one isolated system to the next.

“The emphasis,” Jackson said, “is on benchmarking of services to establish current performance criteria and, from this established level of performance, develop a plan that moves DPS towards continuous improvement of services through the ongoing assessment of the operational workflow processes.” Jackson added: “RIMS will also provide us with the ability to efficiently capture accurate monthly operations data for our Managing For Results (MFR) initiative. Without the development of RIMS, capturing and reporting these data currently requires the manual compilation of literally hundreds of service request forms that are also currently being recorded manually by hand, then having to input these data into the MFR reporting system. RIMS provides our department with the ability to print our strategic results data and input them directly into the Strategic Results Performance report in a very efficient manner. The bottom line is that citizens are better served.” Margaret Ray, Wayne County’s DOT/RIMS Project Manager, said the program is also instrumental in payroll, asset and work management systems, improving communication and the timely transfer of information to and from the workforce. “Having accurate and up-to-date information in the hands of the right person at the right time,” she said, “is one of the many benefits the County will receive from RIMS, which will translate into better and more efficient services being delivered to its residents.”

Department of Technology RIMS Project Manager Margaret Ray copresenting with Director Jackson at Cityworks User Group Conference, March 5, 2008

Recognizing the potential benefits, the County’s Department of Technology aligned its efforts and recommended RIMS to complement DPS operations. The project also provides citizens a timely status of their service requests—or other County departments and County Commissioners tracking service requests. Due to the complexity of the project and the need for a robust system, the first phase of Wayne County’s RIMS project involves a test system, which is currently in process within Wayne County’s Roads District Three. This pilot will allow the Roads’ management staff to track, flush-out and tweak issues, and finalize workflow. The second phase of the project delivers a final build-out and delivery of the RIMS application supporting the Roads Division. The County’s DPS director, James A. Jackson, said RIMS technology allows management to monitor the timeliness with which each request is handled and to analyze existing workflows to determine if adjustments should be made to improve these areas.

Funding for any government unit is always a priority. Initial RIMS funding and in-depth analysis started in 2000, culminating with an Intelligent Transportation System appropriation from the U.S. Federal Highway Administration and Wayne County matching funds. The development of the core data base was awarded to GeoAnalytics Inc., an IT consulting firm specializing in enterprise information systems, along with SAS Institute, Azteca Systems and Sigma Associates. The second part of the project was awarded to The Traverse Environmental Group, a firm based in Detroit, Michigan, working in collaboration with Conestoga-Rovers & Associates, who are responsible for developing the field interface and field-order updates and the Automated Vehicle Locator devices. Wayne County’s RIMS project presents developers with an exceptional level of complexity due to the stiff requirements, the number of users, business functions and business systems to be integrated and supported. RIMS technology involves collaboration with Azteca Systems’ Cityworks and Cityworks Server; SAS’s Information Delivery Portal and Intelligent Warehouse; and CRA’s e:Monitor applications for mobile computing and Automated Vehicle Location. “This project is a significant undertaking by the County. It will serve them by providing immediate gains and a foundation for their vision of becoming the foremost county in the July 2008

APWA Reporter


country in state-of-the-art transportation infrastructure,” GeoAnalytics’ CEO William Holland said. Wayne County also plans to share RIMS, offering surrounding communities the opportunity to interact with the system. “Wayne County is a two-billion-dollar business—and we’re serious about running it like one,” County Executive Ficano said.

Here’s how RIMS is being used: Pavement Maintenance Section. Maintain a road system of approximately 1,559 County primary and local roadways and 462 miles of state trunk lines and freeways. Pavement Maintenance will use RIMS to collect and respond back to citizens who notify the Roads Department of road hazards, to dispatch reactive and preventive work orders to field operation crews, and track-related infrastructure assets through the workflow process. RIMS has the ability to geographically display active work along roadways using the Automated Vehicle Locators in conjunction with ESRI & Cityworks mapping. Dispatchers can view current work-related activities, determine how they correspond to other already occurring incidents and surrounding infrastructure, and assign work teams more effectively, thereby improving workflow and managing costs.

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Director Jackson presenting the RIMS system to approximately 150 public works and municipal managers at Cityworks User Group Conference held in Canton, Michigan on March 5, 2008

Furthermore, RIMS is being designed to enable the reporting of the total number of lane miles that are salted and plowed during the winter salting and plowing operations with a breakdown of labor, material, and equipment costs and totals for specific route, storm or County district. Traffic Operations Section. Control and manage inventory for the 100,000 signs and 1,458 traffic signals located on the State and County road systems. Moving forward, the application will enable the (near) real-time data collection, documentation and storage of review data obtained from inspection of County and State roadways to assure that traffic safety engineering principles are maintained in determining speed limits, signage and other requirements. Supervisors can interactively schedule, route and track crew activities. Structure Maintenance Section. Real-time appraisal of the structural integrity for the 308 bridges on the Wayne County road system and 840 bridges on State trunk lines and freeways. Assets such as attenuators or bridges can be attached to work orders using ESRI mapping and Geographical Information System (GIS) positioning. Supervisors will schedule and track work teams used to maintain and ensure the operation of 162 stormwater pump stations (546 pumps) and 207 impact attenuators, seven bridges, four tunnels, and the 12 pump houses for the Wayne County Airport Authority. Forestry Division. Collection of tree inventories and assist Forestry supervisors in effectively dispatching crews. Realtime data collection will record inspections of trees, help locate trees identified with disease or insects, and identify locations of trees for trimming and removal.

FIND OUT at • 800-747-8567 64

APWA Reporter

July 2008

Margaret Ray can be reached at (313) 224-8746 or mray@; James A. Jackson can be reached at (313) 2247373 or; and Craig Garrett can be reached at (313) 224-0849 or

Energy efficiency arrives at the Pittsburgh tunnels Ken Thorton, P.G., Chief, Pollution Prevention Section, Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and Chris Peterson, Associate, Five Winds International, Ottawa, Ontario

ighway tunnels have a long and storied history in both Europe and the United States. Many date from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and were built because practical engineering required it: There was no “cut and fill” practice in those days, and sometimes the most economical way to build a road around a mountain was to instead tunnel through it.

spectively. These tunnels are not merely tubes through the overtopping hills; they are considered some of PennDOT’s largest operating machinery, having many working parts all vital to day-to-day operations that keep city traffic flowing smoothly through the greater Pittsburgh area.

Many Pennsylvania residents and travelers are familiar with the five active tunnels of the Pennsylvania Turnpike, administered by the PA Turnpike Commission. Many of these tunnels were begun as railroad tunnels of the aborted Southern Pennsylvania Railroad in the 1880s and were later improved and completed when the turnpike was built in the 1940s through the 1960s. The only other working highway tunnels in Pennsylvania are to be found in the Pittsburgh area, PennDOT’s Engineering District 11, where four tunnels through the locally mountainous terrain connect Pittsburgh’s many boroughs. Ordinarily, most motorists do not notice much about the tunnels. But the storied Pittsburgh tunnels are heralding a new type of eco-friendly management. During recent years, PennDOT’s unique Tunnels Maintenance Organization (District 11-3) rose to the challenge of limited budgets and aging infrastructure to upgrade existing ventilation and lighting systems with energy-efficient technology that has reduced both cost and environmental impact of operating the tunnels. In this brief case study, we will review the unique challenges of tunnels operations and maintenance, the opportunity for enhanced environmental improvements, and the results of PennDOT’s innovations.

The Challenge PennDOT’s District 11-3 operates four tunnels in Pittsburgh. Three of them—Liberty, Squirrel Hill and Fort Pitt—are substantial operations having lighting and ventilation systems, while the fourth, the Stowe Tunnel, is a small self-sufficient tunnel that does not require them. The Liberty, Squirrel Hill, and Fort Pitt tunnels were built in 1924, 1953 and 1960, re-


APWA Reporter

July 2008

Motors in Pittsburgh tunnels. The black motor in front is the new one installed alongside the old models. (Photo courtesy of PennDOT)

Support infrastructure for these three tunnels consists of eight fan systems at Squirrel Hill and Liberty to sixteen fan systems at Fort Pitt, each with their own motors, switchgear, and monitoring systems. In addition, these tunnels have lighting systems, air quality monitors, traffic cameras, and command and control facilities that are manned around the clock. At the beginning of the 21st Century, the pressurization and exhaust fans had been operating for close to fifty years and nearing the end of their useful lives. These motors had been fully depreciated many years ago. According to Thomas Diddle, Maintenance Manager for the Pittsburgh Tunnels Organization (Engineering District 11-3), up to 25% of the fans routinely required downtime for repair or rebuilds every month. Worse, because some of the motors dated to the Warren G. Harding and Calvin C. Coolidge Administrations, many vital parts were no longer manufac-

tured. Replacement parts had to be custom-machined in order to repair the fans, increasing downtime, maintenance costs and inconvenience to the motoring public. Ultimately, the decision was taken to replace 24 of the 32 motors which are used to maintain the airflow in the tunnels. The remaining 8 motors, at Fort Pitt, are used only for fire/emergency incidents, and it was decided that replacing them at this time is not cost-effective. Beyond the maintenance challenges was the added headache of rising energy prices. In 2005, electricity costs for the tunnels operation was $848,502. The tunnels’ ventilation systems not only required costly maintenance, but the energy costs for normal operations were becoming prohibitive. Compounding the usual O&M pressures confronting Engineering District 11, Executive Order 1998-1 by then-Governor Ridge challenged all agencies in the Commonwealth to incorporate sound environmental management practices into their operations. PennDOT’s leaders volunteered to be the first to implement an environmental management system as part of the business strategy, launching the Strategic Environmental Management Program (SEMP) in 1999 with a thorough analysis of the environmental effects of all its divisions. SEMP was structured along the lines of the ISO 14001 Environmental Quality Management Standard, an internationally recognized system. To improve the efficiency of its highway maintenance operations, PennDOT obtained ISO 14001 registration of major activities in its highway maintenance operations, including management of Pittsburgh Tunnels. An important adjunct of SEMP’s efforts has been raising the awareness of PennDOT employees, encouraging them to see every situation as an opportunity to demonstrate sound stewardship of both fiscal and environmental impacts. Despite the magnitude of these challenges, the District 11-3 tunnels team saw an opportunity to think and act strategically in bringing the Tunnels Operation into the 21st Century by combining the fiduciary responsibility to control O&M costs with demonstration of sound environmental management envisioned by SEMP.

a pilot program under SEMP. The initial pilot test was performed in the fall of 1999. The Tunnels Team used SEMP funding to purchase the first three motors. (Each motor costs approximately $125,000 including installation.) The new motors have electronicallyregulated variable-speed drives. Unlike the motors they replaced, these motors have an operating draw of 3 to 5 amps at low speed, compared to 30 to 35 amps for the originals. Further, motor speed is infinitely variable, compared to the older models which had windings that allowed for only three output settings (high, medium, low) when operating. These three pilot fans successfully demonstrated economic benefits, resulting in the eventual replacement of the remaining stock of old-style motors with variable-speed models. The District expects to reduce its energy use by approximately 130,000 Kwh per year, saving taxpayers thousands of dollars even as energy prices continue to increase. With the new motors in place, the Tunnels Team recognized an opportunity to extend the energy savings by modernizing their approach to tunnels management. Today, sophisticated technology allows for the fans to be automatically adjusted in response to changing carbon monoxide (CO) levels. Where once the fan speeds had to be manually controlled using three settings (high, medium, low) and the number of fans in operation was a manual decision, today’s technology assures that CO remains at safe levels while fans are continuously recruited and adjusted in response to the traffic demand on the system. Motors which once ran constantly at peak output now operate efficiently and do not require regulation by the operators. Full-speed atmosphere changes inside the tunnels are required only during peak traffic hours and occasionally in the event of a traffic incident. Fortunately, on average, the fans operate on a low setting for nearly 16 hours a day.

The Results These efforts have saved PennDOT some $215,000 in reduced operating costs (repairs and energy demand) per year. Based on current energy prices, the motors are expected to pay for themselves within 14 years.

The Opportunity


The District 11-3 tunnels team recognized the need to replace vital-but-aging fan motors with newer, more efficient and reliable technology. The question was how to find the funding and justify the initial costs. By recognizing the opportunity to reduce energy demand, maintenance costs and environmental impacts by upgrading the fan motors, the team was able to qualify the project for partial funding as

Conflicting objectives of economic and environmental performance can be overcome by looking at the problem from another perspective or even simply changing the decision time horizon to incorporate the long-term costs of choices.

Ken Thorton can be reached at

July 2008

APWA Reporter


APWA proudly announces the 2008 Public Works Projects of the Year

he APWA Public Works Projects of the Year awards are presented annually to promote excellence in the management and administration of public works projects, recognizing the alliance between the managing agency, contractor, consultant and their cooperative achievements. The award winners are recognized during APWA’s International Public Works Congress & Exposition. The 2008 Projects of the Year Awards Committee consists of Committee Co-Chair David D. Griscom, Public Works Director (retired), City of Flowery Branch, Ga.; Co-Chair John J. Mercurio, Concord, Calif.; Richard J. Benevento, President, Land Strategies LLC, Boston, Mass.; Donald K. Cannon, Director of Public Works, Township of Lower Merion, Ardmore, Pa.; David L. Lawry, General Services Director, City of Elgin, Ill.; James Nichols, P.E., Deputy City Manager, City of Goodyear, Ariz.; Kevin P. O’Brien, Commissioner of Public Works, Niagara County, N.Y.; Carl L. Quiram, P.E., Director of Public Works, Town of Goffstown, N.H.; Judith F. Wortkoetter, P.E., County Engineer, Greenville County, S.C.; and David S. Zelenok, P.E., Director of Public Works/Engineering, City of Centennial, Colo. Winners of the 2008 Public Works Projects of the Year Award are:

Disaster or Emergency Construction/Repair • <$2 million: Emergency South Dike Construction . p. 69 • $2 million–$10 million: Electrical Distribution System Disaster Recovery. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 70

Environment • <$2 million: Flow Augmentation in Yuma’s East Wetlands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 71 • $2 million–$10 million: Constructed Wetlands and Water Reclamation Facility Improvements . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 72 • $10 million–$100 million: Landfill Closure in Brookline, Massachusetts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 73 • >$100 million: Greenfield Water Reclamation Plant . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 74

Historical Restoration/Preservation • <$2 million: Four Bears Portal Plaza and Linear Library Truss Monument . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 75 • $2 million–$10 million: Wabash Station Renovation and Addition Project . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 76 68

APWA Reporter

July 2008

Structures • <$2 million: Booth Park . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 77 • <$2 million: Union Pacific Railroad Pedestrian Underpass . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 78 • $2 million–$10 million: Geothermal Ice Arenas New and Converted. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 79 • $10 million–$100 million: Half Moone Cruise and Celebration Center . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 80 • >$100 million: Pasadena City Hall Seismic Retrofit Project . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 81

Transportation • <$2 million: Separatist Road Bikeway . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 82 • <$2 million: South Slough Bridge #91 . . . . . . . . . . . p. 83 • $2 million–$10 million: Genesee Riverway Trail . . . p. 84 • $10 million–$100 million: Claude Allouez Bridge Replacement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 85 • >$100 million: Concourse Signal System Modernization and Enclosure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 86


Emergency South Dike Construction Managing Agency: City of Richmond, British Columbia Primary Contractor: Progressive Contracting (Richmond) Ltd. Primary Consultant: City of Richmond, British Columbia Nominated By: APWA British Columbia Chapter A truly island city by nature, the City of Richmond, British Columbia, is surrounded entirely by water. Richmond’s dike system represents one of the City’s most important assets. Larger-than-normal predictions for the 2007 Spring Freshet resulted in significant concern surrounding the stability of portions of Richmond’s dike system to withstand a significant increase in Fraser River flow. Through partnerships with the federal and provincial governments, the City was able to conduct a major dike upgrade along one kilometre of its shoreline within a highly compressed timeframe of 10 weeks.

Dike raising was also completed in a manner incorporating consideration of potential sea level rise as a result of climate change. At present, provincial dike height guidelines do not consider climate change impacts. Rather than solely relying on provincial guidelines as has been the conventional practice, the City of Richmond adopted a proactive approach and set dike heights based on current provincial guidelines plus sea level rise over a 100-year period as projected by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. City Engineering and Public Works staff not only met the challenges of the dike upgrade project, but also delivered the project in a creative, innovative and sustainable manner leaving the City better protected from flooding and in an enhanced environmental state.

Conventional dike design places structural material along the shoreline edge. This approach generally results in significant impact to the riparian and intertidal areas, resulting in long-term ecological impairment and reduced social value. The City of Richmond approached the dike upgrade works from a multi-objective sustainability basis. An interdisciplinary planning team with engineering and ecological expertise was assembled and an innovative design was developed to meet both the flood management and ecological needs of the site. Rather than incorporate the conventional straight-line dike, the alignment of the structural works for this project was designed to vary and avoid existing functional riparian and intertidal areas. To retain structural integrity for portions of the dike that were located further inland, the dike was constructed by shaping the existing bank material and placing dike structural materials and backfill with native soils to various depths. Foreshore benches were constructed to improve ecological conditions and the project incorporated foreshore planting to offset impacts for stretches of the dike constructed immediately adjacent to the shoreline. Accordingly, key innovations included a customized dike design that considered and responded to actual site conditions; new construction techniques that enabled the retention of existing ecological functionality; and a “Net-Plus” approach where ecological health was the focus (rather than solely impact mitigation) and works were designed to result in an overall net improvement both from a flood management and ecological basis. July 2008

APWA Reporter



Electrical Distribution System Disaster Recovery Managing Agency: City of Greensburg, Kansas Primary Contractors: BBC Electrical Services, Inc.; PAR Electrical Contractors, Inc. Primary Consultant: Professional Engineering Consultants, P.A. Nominated By: APWA Kansas Chapter The Electrical Distribution System Disaster Recovery project was essential to the residents of Greensburg, Kansas, who are rebuilding after a massive F5 tornado destroyed 95 percent of the city, including the power plant, electrical substation and most of the power lines, on May 4, 2007. Greensburg needed electrical service up as quickly as possible after the disastrous tornado knocked out the entire system. The design team phased the project allowing construction to begin before the entire system was designed, allowing the contractors to start earlier in the process and complete it in record time. A contract delivery date was not established for the project, but a construction completion goal of Christmas was set by the City and served as the driving force for the project schedule. The first phase of the project was constructed by mid-September, three weeks ahead of schedule, and provided the basic system structure along the highway, electricity to the temporary school and an electrical feed to the 21-acre Kiowa County State Lake. Once phase one was complete, electricity was only a few city blocks from any location in the community. This provided flexibility to connect power to buildings as they were rebuilt and reduced the waiting time for individual homeowners to have electricity at their residences. The second phase took 63 days to construct and was complete by late October. This phase concentrated on providing power to homes being constructed on the west side of Greensburg, south of U.S. Highway 54. Most of the new residential construction was taking place in this area including a number of new basements and modular homes set in place each week. This phase was critical in order for construction of the single phase lines through the existing alleys to keep pace with the rapid reconstruction efforts of the residents. The third phase of the project brought electrical lines to the residents on the east side, as well as miscellaneous areas west of Main Street. Finishing phase three brought access to permanent electricity for all properties in the city. 70

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Town Hall meetings, workshops and a master plan provided the incentive for improving the cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s previous capacity. Greensburgâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s former power plant capacity was six megawatts; the new system capacity is 16 megawatts at 13,800 volts. The system voltage was increased from five kilovolts to 15 kilovolts and features a flexible, loop design around the city to accommodate system maintenance and future growth. More than 400 poles with 10.2 miles of new power lines and 200,000 feet of conductor were used during the construction. The distribution system reaches every piece of property in Greensburg.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: ENVIRONMENT LESS THAN $2 MILLION Flow Augmentation in Yumaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s East Wetlands Managing Agency: City of Yuma, Arizona, Utilities Department Primary Contractor: Desert Road Builders Primary Consultant: Carollo Engineers Nominated By: APWA Arizona Chapter The City of Yuma, Arizona, reuses spent filter backwash water (SFBW) from its Main Street Water Treatment Plant (WTP) to support the Yuma East Wetlands project, which is restoring wetlands along the Colorado River. The Cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s discharge to the wetlands is unique because it occurs under modified chlorine and selenium surface water quality standards for the Colorado River at the wetlands. Water quality standards were modified under the net ecological benefit provisions of Arizona state law specifically to allow the City to reuse the SFBW from the Main Street WTP to benefit the Yuma East Wetlands project. The discharge from the Main Street WTP is the first successful application of net ecological benefit in Arizona.

rado River periodically drops so low that no water is conveyed through the south channel into the Yuma East Wetlands. For example, Colorado River flow was high enough to augment flow through the wetlands only three times in the period February to August 2006. The restoration of the Yuma East Wetlands was predicated on the availability of consistent, augmented flow from the Main Street WTP discharge, and the discharge is crucial for the long-term viability of the project. The return of bird life to the area is the most significant ecological impact of the Yuma East Wetlands project. Since habitat restoration and flow augmentation began in the Yuma East Wetlands, bird density and diversity have dramatically increased.

The goals of the Yuma East Wetlands project include restoring and enhancing habitat for the benefit of fish and wildlife, including endangered species; creating low-impact recreational opportunities, such as wildlife viewing; enhancing the historical and cultural heritage of the wetlands for stakeholders, including the Quechan Indian Tribe and the Yuma Crossing National Heritage Area; providing opportunities for environmental education; and fostering economic development through ecotourism opportunities. The SFBW discharged from the Main Street WTP serves as a consistent source of water, similar in quality to the mainstream Colorado River, to augment flow through the wetlands. An estimated 530,000 gallons per day of SFBW is pumped from the Main Street WTP and discharged to the Yuma East Wetlands. This water irrigates the restored and newly-created habitat of riparian trees, shrubs and grasses. The flow rate discharged is sufficient to maintain a riparian/ wetlands habitat for desert species that is significant in size and diversity. Agricultural irrigation return water and periodic flows from the main stem of the Colorado River through the excavated south channel are the only other sources of water for the Yuma East Wetlands. Agricultural return flows alone are not sufficient to sustain the wetlands habitat. The restored south channel of the Colorado River provides some flow through the wetlands; however, the flow in the mainstream ColoJuly 2008

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Constructed Wetlands and Water Reclamation Facility Improvements Managing Agency: City of El Dorado, Kansas Primary Contractor: Utility Contractors, Inc. Primary Consultant: Professional Engineering Consultants, P.A. Nominated By: APWA Kansas Chapter When you think about treatment plant improvements you usually don’t think of economic development or cattail reeds swaying in the soggy breeze as frogs sound the bass beat through a chorus of multicolored insect harmonies. But that is exactly what the improvements at the Constructed Wetlands and Water Reclamation Facility bring to the community of El Dorado, Kansas. Improvements at its wastewater treatment plant put El Dorado in the position for all types of community growth, whether industrial, commercial or residential. Improvements at the plant were made to accommodate changes in the NPDES permit issued by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, as well as the community’s projected growth. The plant, at the cost of $10 million, improves the quality of its discharge, reduces the levels of ammonia to meet federal regulations, plans for anticipated regulation changes, and increases capacity and flexibility to accommodate population and economic growth. The facility improvements include increased storage capacity to 28.5 million gallons (including 4.6-million-gallon extraneous flow basin and 23.9-million-gallon wetland cells); constructed effluent site pond; new pumps and force main located in existing influent pump station structure; new headworks building with fine screens and grit removal; new biological treatment structures including mixers, aeration, clarifiers, pumps and instrumentation; new disinfection and sludge structures including blowers, centrifuge and holding cells; new activated sludge process using an oxidation ditch; and new cascade, pump station, scum pump station, reuse pump system and irrigation system. The new facilities were designed for an average daily flow of 3.0 mgd with a peak flow of 6.0 mgd. The facility can handle wet weather peaks of 12.0 mgd. Flow in excess of 6.0 mgd can either be held in an extraneous flow basin or sent to the wetlands. The plant is fully automated, includes automatic backup power and was constructed to easily expand to twice its current capacity. The City chose to construct an activated sludge process due to the flexibility and efficiency of the system. After discover72

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ing substantial infiltration into its system, the City added constructed wetlands as a part of the treatment concept. The first system of its kind to be used in Kansas, the wetlands reduce the size of the activated sludge system saving El Dorado residents and businesses an estimated $2.8 million in construction dollars. The El Dorado plant serves approximately 15,000 people including 4,800 connections in the City of El Dorado, Butler County Sewer Districts No. 5 and No. 15, and the El Dorado State Correctional Facility just east of El Dorado. “The efficiency and operational capacities of the plant are a much needed improvement to our community infrastructure,” said City Manager Herb Llewellyn.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: ENVIRONMENT $10 MILLION–$100 MILLION Landfill Closure in Brookline, Massachusetts Managing Agency: Town of Brookline, Massachusetts Primary Contractor: ET&L Corporation Primary Consultant: Camp Dresser & McKee Inc. Nominated By: APWA New England Chapter The Town of Brookline, Massachusetts’ Landfill Closure project is an excellent example to municipalities throughout the United States under mandates to meet the regulatory requirements for capping inactive landfills while maintaining vital public works uses and developing active recreational facilities. The Town undertook an intensive public land-use planning process that involved three separate neighborhoods, several conservation groups that owned parts of the landfills or directly abutting land, and the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection.

and abilities. The park provides the first Town athletic field suitable for high school soccer tournaments, playground structures for older children and tots, picnic areas, a comfort station, restored wetlands, scenic walking trails and connections to the once-isolated conservation areas owned by the Town of Brookline, City of Newton and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. As the project drew to completion, the new synthetic field was broken in by the Brookline High School Varsity Soccer Team. All involved were pleased with the outcome and the steps taken to develop a resolution for this environmental concern, relying strongly on public involvement.

In 1997, the Town of Brookline commenced a process to address the capping of two landfill sites located on Newton Street in Brookline, and to evaluate the highest and best use for the sites, post-closure. The Town recognized that the Front and Back landfills were incredible public assets and presented a rare opportunity to create new parkland. The project required significant public input through the Town’s formal park facility approval process administered by the Park and Recreation Commission. The Town submitted and received an Urban Self Help Grant and worked with private donors to raise additional funding to construct a synthetic turf field on top of the landfill site. The unique part of this project was the corrective action around 24 private homes located near the edge of one of the landfills. Most of the homes were owned by long-term senior residents of the community. This was a very sensitive and complex situation that facilitated a tremendous amount of personal communication from the DPW staff. Staff met with sons and daughters of some residents trying to help their parents make a clear decision as to how to proceed. Meetings took place at night and in their homes when necessary. This personal effort resulted in a winning situation for the abutters and the Town, resulting in successful agreements without legal action. After 10 years, the Town was pleased to celebrate the grand opening of a new 15.15-acre community park on the former Front landfill site—the first park addition to the Town’s open space inventory in over a quarter of a century. Skyline Park includes active and passive recreation amenities for all ages July 2008

APWA Reporter


PROJECT OF THE YEAR: ENVIRONMENT MORE THAN $100 MILLION Greenfield Water Reclamation Plant Managing Agency: City of Mesa, Arizona Primary Contractor: McCarthy/Sundt, a Joint Venture Primary Consultant: Carollo Engineers Nominated By: APWA Arizona Chapter

shape of the digesters, and then erected onsite and welded together. The aesthetics of the massive digesters were broken up by burying them one-third way into the ground and adding architectural features to play with the light and shadow.

The Greenfield Water Reclamation Plant (GWRP) is one of the largest and newest “end-of-the-line” water reclamation plants in the Phoenix metropolitan area. The project’s greatest success was the ability to meet the needs of three owners (City of Mesa, Town of Gilbert and Town of Queen Creek), collaborate with two design engineers and build with a joint venture general contractor. These entities were able to collaborate, communicate and act efficiently in order to bring the project online on time and within two percent of the original budget with no disputes.

In order to create a natural barrier from public view, excavated materials were used to make landscaped earthen berms. By planning excavations so as to minimize equipment and material transportation to offsite locations, fuel was conserved.

With a liquids train capacity of 16 mgd annual average day flow (AADF), the Phase II Expansion was designed and built to reliably meet Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) Class A+ reclaimed water quality standards. The reliability of the treatment facility is further challenged by the exceptionally high-peaking factors that resulted in design capacities of 24 mgd maximum per month, 32 mgd peak day, and 48 mgd peak hour. The GWRP is also a regional solids facility capable of handling 24 mgd equivalent of solids (16 mgd from the GWRP plus 8 mgd transferred from Mesa’s Southeast WRP). The solids treatment system is designed to produce Class B dewatered sludge for land application. In addition to delivering water to the constituents, this facility was designed to be a good neighbor in terms of appearance, noise and odor, blending seamlessly into the community it serves. A number of innovative techniques were used during the construction of the Greenfield Water Reclamation Plant. There were two existing aluminum domes that covered the primary clarifiers. These domes were removed in one piece, set on the ground, retrofitted with new catwalks, and then placed back on the clarifiers, resulting in the safest way to make modifications. Four new secondary clarifiers were also built on the ground and flown into place on the structure, allowing the highest level of both productivity and safety during installation. The prefabrication and onsite fabrication of sheet steel for the digesters was very innovative. Sheets of ¾-inch plate steel were rolled and formed in both directions to make the “egg” 74

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Four Bears Portal Plaza and Linear Library Truss Monument Managing Agency: North Dakota Department of Transportation Primary Contractor: Industrial Builders Inc. Primary Consultant: Kadrmas, Lee & Jackson, Inc. Nominated By: APWA North Dakota Chapter The Four Bears Portal Plaza and Linear Library Truss Monument was not an overnight job. The plaza and library had to be an extension of the Four Bears Bridge in New Town, North Dakota, the longest bridge in the state, spanning 4,500 feet across Lake Sakakawea and the surrounding area. More importantly, the bridge is a piece of standing history and the plaza and library were conceived to tell the story of the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation (MHAN), whose cultures have become entwined with the Four Bears Bridges, past and present.

in a triangular array, with each circle incorporating four cast-in-place concrete monuments. The monuments display interpretive panels, which state the significance of each cultural icon medallion featured on the Four Bears Bridge piers and walkway. Colored geometric patterns representing each Tribe were imprinted into the concrete walkways with custom-fabricated steel templates, followed by a hand-applied surface colorant. All monuments for the interpretive panels were constructed of custom-formed, cast-in-place concrete with special surface finishes and colors. The resulting product provides a vandal-resistant, low-maintenance product with visual appeal that harmonizes with the new concrete bridge design and adjacent natural land forms.

Before construction or bidding began, the consultant worked with Tribal Elders of the MHAN as well as the general public to develop a context-sensitive design for a portal plaza and connecting trail system. Area residents supported the project and the portal plaza was conceived to present the history and stories behind the cultural icon symbols that were incorporated into the new Four Bears Bridge, and the historic Four Bears Bridges of 1934 and 1955. The existing Four Bears Bridge was listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and required extensive environmental studies before it could be replaced. After the studies were completed, the National Register of Historic Places required a Historic American Engineering Record and the preservation of the two entry portals of the 1934 bridgeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s steel-through-truss superstructure, which was incorporated into the frame of the 1955 Four Bears Bridge. The consultant took the requirements a step further and the Portal Plaza now exhibits the reconstruction of scaled replicas of the original 1934 bridge piers utilized at Elbowoods, North Dakota, and the 1955 bridge piers from the relocated Elbowoods Bridge at New Town, North Dakota. The salvaged bridge portals were then restored and placed on the new replica piers for display in the Portal Plaza. The overall design of the Portal Plaza is the result of numerous meetings with Tribal Elders, culminating in many subtle and not-so-subtle design elements that represent the rich cultural heritage of the area and complement the new Four Bears Bridge and adjacent natural areas. For example, MHAN are represented symbolically with three interlocking circles July 2008

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Wabash Station Renovation and Addition Project Managing Agency: City of Columbia, Missouri Primary Contractor: Sircal Contracting Primary Consultant: 360 Architecture Nominated By: City of Columbia, Missouri The Wabash Station originally opened in 1910 as the Wabash Railroad Station and provided passenger service on the Wabash Railroad Company lines until 1964. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979, the building is a living reminder of the role of rail travel in bringing the world to a growing community. It was designed in a TudorGothic style similar to many of the surrounding buildings and in keeping with the architecture of the University of Missouri-Columbia’s campus. The City purchased the facility in 1982, which now serves as the central hub for its bus transportation system. Later, the Wabash Station was utilized as office space for the City Parking Utility and Parking Enforcement sections. Since then, the City has added an entirely new transit function to the operation use of the facility—the Paratransit system, which complements the fixed route system. In the early 1990s, a complete and separate Paratransit fleet was purchased and workforce hired. It was initially natural for the City to operate the Paratransit system also out of the Wabash Station to reduce labor overhead. As the turn of the century approached, the Paratransit operation had grown to require its own separate dispatcher and scheduling facility. Even though it makes sense for both operations to continue to function out of the same facility, the same people could no longer efficiently dispatch and control both the fixed route and Paratransit systems simultaneously. This totally separate transportation capacity was not at all considered when the original station was purchased and workspace laid out in the early 1980s. With a total renovation cost of approximately $3.5 million, the project was funded by a grant from the federal government and local transportation sales tax. The restoration and renovation expanded the facility to accommodate the City’s growing bus and transportation system. Renovations included exterior repair, window replacement, roof repairs and interior restoration of the passenger waiting areas. The addition is sensitive to the form of the old structure while lightly touching the historic structure to minimize modifications. The site has been designed to optimize the circulation of bus, auto and pedestrian traffic on and off the site. 76

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The project has revived and preserved this historic place as a viable city facility for years to come. The Wabash Station is LEED™ certified. A unique feature of the Wabash Station is site-specific public art. Placed as the result of Columbia’s Percent for Art Program, an initiative that sets aside one percent of eligible capital improvement project budgets for art, the Wabash Station continues the city’s growing tradition of enhancing public facilities with art.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: STRUCTURES LESS THAN $2 MILLION Booth Park Managing Agency: City of Birmingham, Michigan Primary Contractor: Tom’s Landscaping, Inc. Primary Consultant: Wade Trim Nominated By: APWA Michigan Chapter Great things come in small packages, like the City of Birmingham’s $1 million environmental and recreational renovation of Booth Park. The four-acre parcel was transformed by the community from a fallow property into a unique public space that people of all ages and abilities can enjoy. Located near downtown Birmingham, the park acts as the northern gateway to the community and is bordered by a commercial art district, the Rouge River and its associated forested floodplain, and the Mill pond neighborhood. Major project elements include a community-built playscape, a labyrinth and tunnel, turf hill/amphitheater, bioretention basin (rain garden), bioengineered stabilized stream banks, native riparian zone plantings, a pedestrian trail connecting to the Rouge River Trail and rolling open green space. The City’s passage of a $25 million bond issue for recreational improvements combined with a community group’s desire to build a play structure helped jump-start improvements at Booth Park. The park concept began in 2000 with the City’s adoption of a Recreation Master Plan that identified improvements at Booth Park as a high priority. The property historically contained a roundhouse for Detroit’s interurban rail system and more recently served as a construction staging area for a major sewer system upgrade. Both uses left the park property in need of major aesthetic and environmental improvements. Extremely tight site constraints required a design that balanced the park’s function with its surroundings. The flat site was heavily contoured to create an interesting topography that would look natural and aid in site design. Extensive mounding and berming were undertaken to lower the play area to limit noise impacts on nearby residents. Heavy use areas of the park were clustered at one end to protect environmentally-sensitive areas from human activity while still allowing visitors to enjoy the site’s natural resources. A low-voltage lighting system was incorporated to reduce light pollution, enhance safety and add a tasteful and dramatic effect during evening hours. The park offers a wide variety of active and passive play experiences within a tight site without feeling overdeveloped.

Park materials were carefully selected for their longevity and ability to blend with the natural environment. Life-cycle cost analyses were performed for the rock materials and playground structures to help select materials that would be highly durable, regionally available and, if appropriate, derived from sustainable or recycled sources. Native Great Lakes stone and granite boulders were used in the retaining walls and labyrinth garden. Earth tone colors used on the playscape were inspired by the natural surroundings. The native plants used throughout the bank stabilization and rain garden will require minimal maintenance and irrigation. In other landscaped areas of the park, maintenance needs were minimized by providing easy access.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: STRUCTURES LESS THAN $2 MILLION Union Pacific Railroad Pedestrian Underpass Managing Agency: Village of Arlington Heights, Illinois Primary Contractor: Albin Carlson Primary Consultant: TranSystems Nominated By: APWA Chicago Metro Chapter The residents of the Village of Arlington Heights, Illinois, appreciate the parks, walkways and bicycle paths that help make their community appealing and livable. When the Union Pacific Railroad advised the Village it would be necessary to abandon and fill the 80-year-old bridge that had long served as a pedestrian and bicycle underpass under three heavily used tracks, Village leaders assembled a strong team of professionals to find a solution. The underpass was in poor condition and clearly needed to be removed. However, it provided access under the railroad tracks to schools, parks and the Metra train station for the surrounding neighborhood. (Metra is the commuter train service that operates on Union Pacific Railroad tracks in northwestern Chicago and its suburbs.) A solution was identified involving the construction of a reinforced concrete pedestrian underpass within the existing bridge span opening, but the solution came with two challenges. First, construction had to be performed under live railroad traffic; the design team addressed the issue in the construction plans. Second, in order for the approach walkways to meet the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act and the headroom requirements of a pedestrian underpass, the existing railroad tracks at the project location had to be raised by approximately one foot. This challenge was overcome when the Union Pacific Railroad agreed to perform the grade modification with its own forces. The new underpass was constructed within the existing bridge opening while maintaining rail traffic throughout construction. This involved construction of a heavily reinforced concrete structure under extremely confined conditions. The available work space was further reduced by the bracing required to maintain the stability of the existing limestone abutments during excavation for the bottom slab of the culvert. Additional challenges surfaced when the remains of a previous structure, predating the existing bridge, were encountered during excavation. The old foundations were dismantled with carbide-bladed saws while maintaining the required abutment bracing.


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The wingwalls of the existing bridge were incorporated into the new structure, allowing the project to meet the aesthetic objectives of the Village. The desired appearance of the large limestone block walls was maintained. The existing walls were modified as required to accommodate revisions to existing grades for access to the underpass. Ornamental railings were added to meet the safety requirements of the railroads. Though the antique underpass in Arlington Heights was in danger of being closed due to its deteriorated condition, the dedicated project team helped ensure that the convenience and quality of life it brought to the community would remain through its modern replacement.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: STRUCTURES $2 MILLION, BUT LESS THAN $10 MILLION Geothermal Ice Arenas New and Converted Managing Agency: Olmsted County, Minnesota Primary Contractor: Met-Con Construction, Inc. Primary Consultant: HGA Architects Nominated By: APWA Minnesota Chapter Olmsted County, Minnesota, used state-of-the-art technology providing two new geothermal systems in the Graham Ice Arena Complex located on the fairgrounds in Rochester, Minnesota. The energy-efficient ice arenas use energy in the earth to reduce use of fossil fuels, greenhouse gas emissions and operation and maintenance costs. The Environmental Protection Agency states that geothermal heating and cooling is the most energy-efficient, environmentally clean and cost-effective space conditioning system available today.

pits for two arenas has eliminated the practice of ice surfacing equipment dumping snow outside and tracking in dirt on the ice. The energy savings in the Geothermal Ice Arenas project were estimated to be 40 to 45 percent compared to a conventional rink. The comparison of the conventional system in Graham Arena I, operating under ideal conditions at the end of the season, compared to startup conditions and highenergy demands with the new geothermal systems, shows energy savings of 65 percent. The savings greatly exceeded project expectations.

Graham Arena I was built in 1967 and provided seating for about 2,500 spectators. Graham Arena II was built in 1993 primarily as a practice facility. Graham Arena III opened in 1997, also primarily as a practice facility. The planning process for Graham Arena IV involved a wide variety of stakeholders, including Youth Hockey Association, figure skating clubs, high school boys and girls hockey, Fair Board, various exhibit space users, Convention and Visitors Bureau, public and private high schools, Rochester City Council and Olmsted County Board. The result of the planning process determined a need for a fourth arena with spectator seating and a design concept to provide a lobby to tie all four arenas together in one building. The City Building and Safety Department examined the existing machinery room in Graham Arena I as part of the building code review, and determined that the 40-yearold refrigeration equipment and heating systems were not in compliance with the 2003 Minnesota State Mechanical Code. The decision was made to replace the existing refrigeration and heating systems with the geothermal ice making system. The energy savings could be used to offset a portion of the capital costs debt service. The new Graham Arena IV facility provides a superior ice surface and the skaters have been delighted with the in-floor heat in the spectators seating area and the heated building. The perimeter heating of the ice rink has prevented transmission of frost, eliminating the hazard of frost on the surface for those who stand along the boards. The in-floor heating in the locker rooms provides a very uniform heat and dries up any moisture on the floor. The use of snow melting July 2008

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PROJECT OF THE YEAR: STRUCTURES $10 MILLION–$100 MILLION Half Moone Cruise and Celebration Center Managing Agency: City of Norfolk, Virginia Primary Contractor: S.B. Ballard Construction Company Primary Consultant: Clark Nexsen, Architecture & Engineering Nominated By: APWA VA/DC/MD Chapter The City of Norfolk, Virginia, has truly arrived on the cruise scene with a 775 percent growth in passengers from 2001 to 2007. To accommodate the surge, the City planned, designed and constructed a $40 million state-of-the-art cruise terminal, or the Half Moone Cruise and Celebration Center. The terminal is within a short walking distance of downtown shops, restaurants and hotels. Due to Norfolk’s central location on the Eastern seaboard, home-porting ships can sail to Bermuda (Celebrity Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises), the Bahamas (Carnival) and the Caribbean (Holland America Line). City leaders envisioned the thousands of passengers and crew that each cruise brings as a good way to revitalize downtown by filling restaurants, stores and tourist attractions. They also believed the terminal could generate additional revenue for the city during the off-season, since the facility would be designed as a space for meetings and events. When the cruise ships are out at sea and during the shoulder seasons, the City uses the facility for meetings, corporate dinners, holiday parties and other gatherings, with an average of 600 people for a seated event and up to 3,500 for a social event. The glass-enclosed facility with spectacular views of the Elizabeth River and harbor becomes a “celebration center,” offering more than 33,000 square feet for meetings and other events. The Half Moone Cruise and Celebration Center is the first cruise terminal constructed in the United States since the 9/11 terrorist attacks and has been labeled by port officials as the “most security-focused customs and border protection area of any cruise terminal nationwide.” The terminal has been adopted by the Department of Homeland Security as the prototype for future terminals. It incorporates the latest security standards integrating customs and immigration procedures in a spacious 10,000-square-foot area, complete with computerized kiosks. Access to the terminal is by way of Town Point Park. Elevators carry people to the second level where they cross an elevated bridge into a grand rotunda. From there, passengers pass through security checkpoints and onto an elevated 80

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gangway for boarding. Passengers disembarking a ship will go to the lower level to collect luggage and pass through a customs and border protection area. To date, the Half Moone Cruise and Celebration Center is the largest Capital Improvement Project ever undertaken by the City of Norfolk and the Norfolk Public Works Department. It differs from other terminals in that it is a city project, instead of a division within a port authority. This autonomy gives Norfolk more control on such issues as the on-time arrival and departure of ships, and on the overall experience of cruise passengers from the time they leave home until they step on a ship’s gangway. Photos by John Wadsworth

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: STRUCTURES MORE THAN $100 MILLION Pasadena City Hall Seismic Retrofit Project Managing Agency: City of Pasadena, California Primary Contractor: Clark Construction, California, LP Primary Consultant: Architectural Resources Group Nominated By: City of Pasadena, California The seismic upgrade and rehabilitation of Pasadena City Hall, located in earthquake-prone southern California, was the largest capital undertaking in city history. The total project budget of $117 million included $80 million in construction costs and $8 million in project contingency. Built in 1927, Pasadena City Hall is the city’s most important civic icon, serves as the centerpiece of the Pasadena Civic Center and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places (1980). From afar, the building appeared to be aging gracefully, but closer inspection revealed that the structure was at risk due to a number of deep cracks and considerable earthquake damage to two stair towers and the lantern in the building’s ornate dome. City Hall also suffered from extensive water damage and deferred maintenance, and a number of its historic architectural elements urgently needed repair. Upgrades were required to eliminate the building’s architectural barriers and comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). In addition, outdated mechanical, electrical, plumbing and life safety systems required replacement.

technology upgrades, new and upgraded elevators, and ADA-compliant building and courtyard ramps, signage and audible alarms. Renovations of non-historic spaces provided new offices, restrooms, conference areas, floor coverings, lighting and furnishings. Historic areas, including City Council chambers, original offices, restrooms and ceilings were restored to federal preservation standards. Exterior restoration refurbished original cast stone building elements, façade plaster, copper roof cladding on the lanterns of the main dome and stair towers, exterior lighting and landscaping, including the historic courtyard fountain. As part of this ambitious construction program and in concert with the City of Pasadena’s policy for environmental stewardship, sustainable resources were incorporated into the project to comply with the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED™) and in February 2008 the project was awarded LEED™ Gold level certification.

Construction was initiated in 2005 to repair earlier earthquake damage and to seismically strengthen and safeguard the city’s most important building. Components of the project included a comprehensive program of state-of-the-art structural seismic upgrades, new building technology and replacement of outdated building systems; new fire-life safety systems; interior renovation; ADA upgrades; and restoration of historic interior/exterior building and landscape areas. The project’s primary focus was to seismically strengthen and protect the historic 80-year-old building during an earthquake by incorporating a system of structural upgrades. The program included removal of the original basement slab, installing a new foundation, placing a new floor transfer system, installing 240 double-concave, friction pendulum base isolators beneath the building, new shear walls and a surrounding “moat” to permit building movement during earthquakes. Interior building rehabilitation provided new HVAC, mechanical, electrical, plumbing and fire-life safety systems, July 2008

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PROJECT OFTRANSPORTATION THE YEAR: LESS THAN $2 MILLION Separatist Road Bikeway Managing Agency: Town of Mansfield, Connecticut, Department of Public Works Primary Contractor: Town of Mansfield, Connecticut, Department of Public Works Primary Consultant: Weston & Sampson Engineers, Inc. Nominated By: APWA New England Chapter The Town of Mansfield, Connecticut, is committed to promoting safe non-motorized transportation for its residents. Development of the Town’s walkway/bikeway facilities over the past 10-15 years has been central to this effort. The recently completed section of the Separatist Road Bikeway is a key part of the Town’s walkway/bikeway system constructed by Town forces. The most unique aspect of this $600,000 project is that, except for one retaining wall and large tree cutting, it was built entirely by the employees of the Town’s Department of Public Works. The Separatist Road bikeway was a priority-listed bikeway/ walkway project from the Town’s walkway priority list developed and updated over the years by the Town’s Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC). It was funded entirely by the budget appropriations in the Town’s capital budget over several years. The TAC recognized this curvy two-lane road to be a fairly high-volume-traveled cut-through road. The lanes are generally twelve feet wide and it has a posted speed limit of 30 mph with much higher actual speeds. The area has a relatively high population density and is adjacent to the University of Connecticut. This section of road is also used by the neighboring high school as its primary cross-country training route and was signed as a “share-theroad” bike route. This project was elevated to the top of the walkway priority list after residents of the Separatist Road neighborhood petitioned the Town Council to make the road safer for bicyclists and pedestrians. In order to save money and offer the greatest flexibility to address neighborhood concerns during construction, it was decided to create a special capital project construction crew within the DPW for this project and assign four of the Department’s regular operating division employees permanently to the project. In order to keep up with the other scheduled maintenance work of the 21-employee division, four new and temporary “project laborers” were hired and assigned to the regular work crews (two of the “project laborers” have since become permanent employees of the DPW). The “construction crew” concept has worked so well that the Department 82

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is planning to construct its next bikeway project to the north using the same employee assignment model. Having the work performed by the Town’s own employees allowed for many of the design features to be developed during construction based on particular needs, whether to address constructibility, safety, aesthetics or resident concerns. Features designed during construction of this project include a large underdrain system in an unforeseen groundwater problem area; additional safety fence around an open drop inlet; additional clearing at road intersections to improve site distance; and additional plantings, as requested, to provide property screening.

PROJECT OFTRANSPORTATION THE YEAR: LESS THAN $2 MILLION South Slough Bridge #91 Managing Agency: Snohomish County, Washington, Public Works Primary Contractor: Snohomish County, Washington, Public Works Primary Consultant: Parsons Brinckerhoff Nominated By: Snohomish County, Washington Snohomish County, Washington’s Bridge #91, located 40 miles north of Seattle, carries Smokey Point Boulevard over South Slough. The two-span concrete arch structure is near Interstate 5 Exit 208 and 5,000 vehicles use the bridge daily. When built in 1918 it was an elegant and sturdy concrete arch bridge, but an inspection in 2005 deemed it functionally obsolete and identified it for replacement with a wider structure to meet current safety and design standards. Although the inspection revealed several major deficiencies of the bridge, the arch foundation was structurally sound. The possibility of keeping it and replacing the other portions of the bridge interested project engineers. In order to determine the feasibility of this option, engineers conducted an in-depth investigation of the existing structure and the loads it carries. Two essential requirements had to be met: •

First, the new wider design had to maintain approximately the same dead load distribution on the original arches, which was necessary to keep them in compression.

Second, the load increase on the substructure and foundations had to be minimized to reduce the risk of excessive settlement.

Precast concrete slabs that would form the wider deck would also add a substantial amount of weight to the bridge. To counterbalance the additional dead load, engineers needed to find a way to reduce weight somewhere else. They studied several lightweight materials to replace the existing heavier soil fill in the arches, and lightweight cellular concrete was chosen. Lightweight cellular concrete had significantly less density than soil fill (approximately 30 pcf for lightweight concrete versus soil’s 125 pcf). The concrete could also be formed in place to create an even contact on top of the existing structure. To maintain the integrity of the arches and ensure safety during construction, the process of removing existing soil fill from the arches and replacing it with the lighter cellular concrete had to be conducted incrementally in two- to fourfoot lifts, alternating between the arches.

An overview of the construction sequence includes removal of the existing concrete slab; partial removal of the existing parapet and using the remaining portion as a form for the new lightweight concrete fill; removal of the existing soil fill in uniform lifts, alternating from one arch to the other to maintain a balanced distribution of weight; filling arches with lightweight concrete in uniform lifts, again alternating from one arch to the other; adding a layer of crushed rock to serve as the base for the new precast concrete slabs; laying the 32 precast slabs on top of the crushed rock, working from the center outward; and adding a lift of asphalt and new galvanized steel bridge rail system.


Genesee Riverway Trail Managing Agency: City of Rochester, New York Primary Contractor: Crane-Hogan Structural Systems, Inc. Primary Consultant: Stantec Consulting Services, Inc. Nominated By: APWA New York Chapter The City of Rochester, New York’s vision for a 15-mile multiuse greenway trail along the banks of the Genesee River is becoming a reality. With its crashing waterfalls and meandering path from the State of Pennsylvania to Lake Ontario, the Genesee River, with a 2,500-mi2 watershed, served as a main attraction for the Native Americans (Seneca Nation) and early American settlers. In fact, the City of Rochester’s existence in its present location is primarily the result of the Genesee River, which was the natural resource for mills during the early industrial revolution. For the last 25 years, the City of Rochester has focused on developing various segments of the Genesee Riverway Trail adjacent to this wonderful natural resource in an effort to provide the Greater Rochester community, population 800,000+/-, with a facility that promotes recreation and other modes of transportation, including walking, running, bicycling, skating, skiing and hiking. In October 2006, the City successfully completed a challenging endeavor toward reaching their overall vision of the Genesee Riverway Trail system. The project intersected with the existing trail just south of Turning Point Park and consisted of the following three distinct infrastructure elements as the trail heads northerly: (1) land-based trail, 2,968 feet in length, utilizing an old railroad bed to transition from the top of the bank to the river’s edge; (2) bridge, 3,572 feet in length, over the Genesee River Turning Basin, commonly referred to as the “boardwalk”; and (3) all-new land-based trail, 3,406 feet in length, through Turning Point Park North and adjacent to the Genesee Marina. The project section presented the design team with the challenge of creating an aesthetic, efficient and cost-effective trail system that would minimize impacts within a highly environmentally sensitive area, but would also be practical and constructible. In order to place the trail adjacent to the Genesee River, the trail corridor required developing an alignment that would coexist within the native ecosystem as well as the surrounding riverside terrain, which was carved and shaped by glacial erosion of the area over 10,000 years ago. 84

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This highly secluded two-mile corridor adjacent to the Genesee River has had limited access in the past. For example, Turning Point Park North (approximately 14 acres) was typically non-accessible due to barriers including the Genesee River to the south and east, CSX railroad corridor to the west and a parcel of private land to the north. The new trail section now allows the community the ability to escape the fast-paced hustle and bustle of an urban lifestyle into a quiet and secluded area of peaceful tranquility. This gem of a natural resource, within only minutes of Downtown Rochester, is now easily accessible to the community.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: TRANSPORTATION $10 MILLION–$100 MILLION Claude Allouez Bridge Replacement Managing Agency: Wisconsin Department of Transportation Primary Contractor: Lunda Construction Company Primary Consultant: Graef, Anhalt, Schloemer & Associates, Inc. Nominated By: APWA Wisconsin Chapter The Claude Allouez Bridge Replacement Project was truly a complex and unique project. It involved replacement of a 75year-old bridge over the Fox River, which was determined to be both structurally deficient and functionally obsolete. Located in the Central Business District of the City of De Pere, Wisconsin, the Claude Allouez Bridge is the sole connection between the east and west sides of this growing community. The project’s complexity resulted from the associated public controversy surrounding the selection of the final preferred alternative, the number and extent of environmental, historical and Section 4(f) resources potentially impacted by the project, extent of project stakeholder coordination, the final aesthetics of the bridge and the construction timeframe. The project planning and environmental evaluation took almost seven years to complete and, even in the midst of the controversy and potential environmental impacts, the environmental evaluation resulted in an ultimate “Finding of No Significant Impact” review by the Federal Highway Administration.

paign to save the existing bridge. Recognizing the sensitivities, the consultant, working with WisDOT, took very proactive measures, including bringing a PR firm on the team, holding dozens of education meetings, producing newsletters, utilizing focus groups and providing project information through the local media over a seven-year period. This effort helped to defeat a binding referendum and ultimately created support for the project. Construction staging was a critical element of the project and required a great deal of strategy to make it work. A very complex traffic staging scheme was ultimately developed and allowed construction to proceed without closing the existing crossing or impacting any of the multitude of environmental resources located in the project corridor.

The new 13-span structure is approximately 1,700 feet in length. The bridge has a modern look, is white in color, has distinctive 50-foot-high pylons on each end delineating both the end and beginning of the crossing, and is supported by knife-shaped rusticated piers. The ultimate project involved construction of a new fourlane bridge; however, it was not the community’s initial preferred choice. The initial preferred alternative was a pair of two-lane, one-way bridges. The project design team worked through the technical issues and found solutions, including the inclusion of the area’s first two-lane roundabout on the east approach to the bridge, which ultimately garnered the community support for a four-lane bridge. The result was an immediate construction cost savings for the bridge of $3 million, while the long-term savings was in the maintenance of one bridge versus two. Various factors created controversy including feared loss of community identity, increased traffic congestion, safety, parking, property access, construction impacts and a camJuly 2008

APWA Reporter


PROJECT OF THE YEAR: TRANSPORTATION MORE THAN $100 MILLION Concourse Signal System Modernization and Enclosure Managing Agency: MTA NYC Transit Primary Contractor: Granite Construction Northeast, Inc. Primary Consultant: NA Nominated By: MTA NYC Transit The New York City Subway is a rapid transit system owned by the City of New York and leased to New York City Transit, a subsidiary agency of the Metropolitan Transit Authority, and also known as MTA New York City Transit. It is one of the most extensive public transportation systems in the world. The $165,520,877 Concourse line project, the largest transit conventional signaling project in the history of the NYC Subway System, consisted of replacing the existing electromechanical-based signal system (circa 1939) and building a new Master Signal Tower at Bedford Park Boulevard and the construction of five relay rooms, one central instrument room and one signal power room. The contract limits were from the north end of the 145th Street Station in Manhattan and ended at the 205th Street Station on the Grand Concourse. The contractor was also responsible for upgrading the 59th Street Tower and relay room and signaling improvements to increase the headways at Canal Street Station on the Eighth Avenue line. The best way to describe signal modernization is to picture another city below ground within the subway system unseen by the riding public. This environment consists of a network of people, equipment rooms, cable, fiber optics, control towers, etc. which occupies all the limited free space available. The purpose of this extensive network is to maintain the safe movement of trains and the riding public. Train operators rely on the signal system to know the locations of other trains, safe speed fluctuations and the distance from the next train. The signals also interact with a communication system so that those in the various command centers or control rooms can monitor whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s going on, make sure everything is running smoothly and take care of emergencies as quickly as possible. The Concourse line project consisted of installing 86,000 feet of messenger cable to support the new signal cables (power, data and fiber optics). A total of 1,003,000 feet of signal and fiber cable was installed. There were 325 newly fabricated cases installed; these are the cabinets that control all signals, train stops and communications that are then transmitted back to the Master Tower and Command Cen86

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ter. These cases control 225 train stops, 267 signal heads and 46 switch machines manufactured by the projectâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s subcontractors. Along with installing six miles of messenger cable and support brackets, chopping of walls as high as seven feet high and as thick as eighteen inches was required to accommodate the placement of the wayside signal equipment. There are 314 insulated joints placed on the roadbed at railcut sections requiring chopping for conduit and boxes for installing track wires. In the relay rooms 384 racks and cabinets were furnished and installed along with an additional 250,000 feet of cable between racks. This project will complete the last leg of the Eighth Avenue line modernization. The new signal system includes new field equipment such as LED signals, automatic trip stops, track switches, communication subsystems and code systems.

Traffic Resources Sale!

Available from

Work Zone Safety: Beyond Cones and Barrels

New! Work Zones— Safety First

2003 • APWA • CD-ROM

2008 • APWA • CD-ROM

Learn key steps in determining how short-term work zone safety areas should be set up, including what situations warrant a flagger, when to close lanes, or route a detour. Examples show work zone set-ups gone awry and how to fix them. Targeted to: public works crews, water, sewer, and other utility maintenance crews. PB.E313 • Member $44.10 /Non $53.10

This program will focus on setting up, maintaining and dismantling work zone areas; procedures for employing daytime vs. nighttime operations; and new retroreflectivity regulations that will impact work zone signage. Be sure to increase the safety of your crews and the public, day and night! PB.E810 • Member price: $53.10 /Non: $62.10

Traffic Control Devices Handbook 521 pp • 2001 • ITE • James L. Pline, Editor

The objective of the Handbook is to bridge the gap between the MUTCD requirements and field applications. This Handbook supplements the MUTCD providing additional background and information to assist in the traffic control device application. PB.XTCD • Member $67.50 /Non $81

Temporary Traffic Control Pocket Reference Guide: Applicable to Operations in Federal MUTCD States 47 pp • 2004 • InCOM, Inc.

Based on the minimum standards of the MUTCD, 2003 Edition. Five sections. Functions as a quick and easy “worker” reference. Provides condensed federal minimum utility work zone traffic control and safety information to users throughout the USA. Handy pocket-size 3½” x 7” with field-durable laminated pages and spiral binding. PB.X506 • Member $18 /Non $22.50

Traffic Management—Handbook for Concrete Pavement Reconstruction and Rehabilitation 68 pp • 2000 • ACPA

A comprehensive and practical engineering manual for planners, design engineers, operations engineers and contractors. Explains the basic concepts, considerations and requirements for managing traffic through construction work zones. Practical construction staging diagrams are provided to fit many project possibilities. PB.X615 • Member $21.60 /Non $30.60

Prices reflect a 10% discount! Roadside Design Guide (3rd Ed.) 344 pp • 2002 • AASHTO

This document presents a synthesis of current information and operating practices related to roadside safety and is presented in both metric and U.S. Customary units. The roadside is defined as that area beyond the traveled way (driving lanes) and the shoulder (if any) of the roadway itself. The focus of this guide is on safety treatments that minimize the likelihood of serious injuries when a driver runs off the road. PB.X502 • Member $144 /Non $148.50

Use Discount Code: REP0708 Offer Ends July 31, 2008 Expedited service available for $20 for two-day Express Delivery or $50 for Express Delivery Overnight. (Order must be received before 12:00 p.m. Central Standard Time.) Please allow 2-4 weeks for delivery on all orders other than expedited service. All funds in U.S. dollars. All prices are subject to change without notice. For deliveries outside the Continental U.S. include standard shipping and handling from below chart plus you must contact APWA at 1-800-848-APWA, for additional service charges. REFUND POLICY: The American Public Works Association strives to provide useful, current information to its members and customers. If you should have a problem with any item in your order, we

encourage you to offer us the opportunity to ensure that you are satisfied. Print products may be returned within 30 days of the invoice date, properly packaged and in saleable condition. (Please include a copy of the packing slip or invoice with your return.) Returns of student and instructor manuals for our training programs will be charged a 25% restocking charge. A full refund will be granted for all other returned print products except for specifically marked packages. Shipping and handling charges are nonrefundable. Photographs, software, CD-ROMs, and videos may not be returned. We appreciate your attention to our policy and look forward to providing you quality products and service.

Fax: (816) 472-1610 • Mail Orders To: APWA • PO Box 802296 • Kansas City, MO • 64180-2296 Order Number Quantity (q)

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S & H (see chart) Delivery outside of Continental U.S. (International, Canada, Alaska, Hawaii, contact APWA for additional service charges)

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Standard S & H Chart for a subtotal of: add:

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Questions? Call APWA at 1-800-848-APWA, ext. 5254 or (816) 472-6100, ext. 5254 (local calls), or

“I’m looking for something different to call attention to our lagging recycling program. Do you have any new ideas?” Well, I’m sure it’s probably not a new idea because someone will have been doing it but it might be new to you! The City of Largo, FL recently held a highly successful and well-attended “Trashy Fashion Show.” The mission of the show was “to instill an awareness of the importance of alternative waste solutions throughout the community and in tomorrow’s leaders.” The fashions were designed, crafted and modeled by area students and adults and were required to be made from at least 75% recyclable or reused materials. Thirty-eight clever fashions using everything from newspaper bags, soda rings, bottle caps, burlap, paint bags, maga-

Distinctive Strengths. United Goals.

zines, used coffee filters and a myriad of other “trashy” items demonstrated the high level of creativity of students from elementary classes through art school. To enjoy a review of the fashions, and for more information about the overall program, check out the website at or contact Brenna Barrett at “Did you say there would soon be a new edition of the Public Works Management Practices Manual? If we’ve been working towards Accreditation using the 5th edition, can we still keep using that one?” I did say, several times actually, that there will be a 6th edition of the Manual and it has been sent to the printer and will be released in August at the APWA Congress in New Orleans. Your agency can continue to work towards Accreditation using the 5th edition ONLY until September 15 UNLESS you sign the Contract for Voluntary Accreditation documents by that date. Once your contract is signed, you are locked into using the 5th edition. You will have three years to complete your work and request your site visit which should be more than enough time. An agency signing a contract AFTER September 15 will be required to use the 6th edition of the Manual. The new 6th edition will feature a new chapter on Bridges! Bob Mommaerts, Director of Public Works, Ocono, WI writes, “Every year we have problems with geese nesting in the campground and on the golf course. They have become quite a problem. Do you know of anyone that has found a successful method to keep them away?”

Engineering, Planning, Code Enforcement, Landscape Architecture, Building and Safety, Construction Management, Financial and Economic Consulting, Geotechnical Engineering, Material Testing and Inspection, Homeland Security and Public Safety. Willdan Administrative Office: 800/424-9144 MuniFinancial: 800/755-MUNI (6864) Arroyo Geotechnical: 714/634-3318 American Homeland Solutions: 877/818-5621


APWA Reporter

July 2008

Don’t we all wish we had a surefire method to solve this problem! The latest ideas have included the “paper coyote kites” that are put on stakes about the same height as a real coyote and moved around every few days to make the geese think they are real. Several areas say this works well for them but, of course, it takes some manpower to keep moving them. Others are using border collies trained to frighten the geese away. Environmentalists cringe when the mention is made of disturbing the goose eggs by oiling them before they hatch in an attempt to get the parent pair not to return the next year but it is an approved method. Others say keeping tall grass that waves in the wind around the edges of the property will deter them. The latest one I heard was “eye

spot” balloons. Place helium-filled balloons with large eyeshapes drawn on three sides, about three feet off the ground. Apparently the geese are frightened by the “eye” and will leave. These too, though, need to be moved frequently. Best I can offer!

this time. However, as issues of sustainability and protecting the environment continue to grow, that may change.

“Our city owns a cemetery and we have recently had requests from some of the environmentalists in the area that we consider ‘green burials.’ Is this something different than allowing for urns to be buried in smaller plots than the standard grave lot size?”

Most definitely! The sixteen graduates of the first Emerging Leaders Academy will be recognized during the Annual Banquet at Congress in New Orleans. Watch for the release in next month’s issue of the Reporter and then get an application for a staff member or yourself if you have been working in the field of public works for seven years or less and really want to devote a full year of time and effort to building your leadership and management skills as you grow both individually and professionally.

Green burials are definitely different than inurnments. The “green” significance is that bodies are prepared for burial without chemical preservatives such as those used in traditional embalming practices and the actual burial is in a biodegradable coffin or a shroud. The intent is for everything to go back to nature more quickly. Cemeteries that allow for these burials frequently have low memorial stones or trees and shrubs dedicated in memory of the deceased and often the areas become nature preserves. Cemetery legislation still protects the property from development or change in usage. Several areas have designated green burial areas but it is not universally accepted throughout North America as the norm at

“Will there be another Emerging Leaders Academy this year?”

Ask Ann… Please address all inquiries to: Ann Daniels Director of Technical Services APWA, 2345 Grand Blvd., Suite 700 Kansas City, MO 64108-2625 Fax questions to: (816) 472-1610 E-mail:

Imagine being a click away from the solutions you need.

You’re there. Imagine if all of the answers to your most challenging questions were right at your fingertips… They are. Literally. APWA’s infoNOW Communities connect you with your peers in public works who can provide you with sound advice, based on real-life experience—with just a single click.

The infoNOW Communities are e-mail groups that address public works’ hottest topics. Exchange advice and ideas with your peers across the country—without leaving your computer. Sign up for APWA’s free infoNOW Communities today. Get real-life real time. It’s now, it’s free, it’s easy. You’re there.

Please go to for information on how to submit a position advertisement on the website and in the APWA Reporter. Public Works Director Rifle, CO RE-ADVERTISED: The City of Rifle, a fast-growing city on Colorado’s Western Slope, is seeking a candidate to immediately fill the position of Public Works Director to direct, manage and supervise the operations of the Public Works Department (Streets, Fleet Management, CIP’s, Safety, and growth-related issues). Provides leadership and oversight to engineering, solid waste and street maintenance operations, and the construction of all public improvements. Responsibilities include providing planning concerning infrastructure needs considering growth and change in progress as well as planned within the community, safety and risk management. Provides support to Utility Department. Requires bachelor’s degree in construction management or closely-related field. Requires minimum of five years of increasing experience in the leadership, direction and design of infrastructure construction and maintenance projects. A minimum of three years of supervisory experience leading multiple teams is required. Hiring range $82-88,000 DOQ. Job description & application available at To apply, submit résumé and City application by June 27, 2008 to HR Director, P.O. Box 1908, Rifle, CO 81650. EOE/ADA Traffic/Transportation Engineer Mission Viejo, CA $7,094–$9,577 Per Month Full-time vacancy scheduled Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. assigned to work at City Hall. Assists in planning, organizing, overseeing and coordinating professional, technical and office support activities related to all programs and activities of the Transportation Division within the Public Works Department; performs various professional field and office traffic engineering and transportation planning work; and provides professional assistance to the Transportation Manager. Equivalent to graduation from a four-year college or university with major course work in civil, traffic or transportation engineering or a related engineering field and six (6) years of professional traffic or transportation engineering design, plan review and 90

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project administration experience, preferably in a public agency setting. Current registration as a Civil or Traffic Engineer in the State of California is highly desirable. Open until filled. Submit résumé to The first review of applications is scheduled for June 9, 2008. Call the City’s 24-hour JobLine at (949) 470-3088 or visit Senior Wastewater Treatment Planner/Designer West Yost Associates Davis, CA West Yost Associates (WYA), nationally recognized as one of the top civil engineering firms in the U.S. by CE News, has an opening for a Senior Wastewater Treatment Planner/Designer to serve as project manager, and/or client liaison for planning and designing of wastewater treatment facilities. Desired areas of expertise include wastewater facility master planning and/or design of wastewater treatment processes. Familiarity with permitting of wastewater treatment processes is a plus. Top-level candidates interested in leading a team and working with firm Principals are particularly encouraged to inquire regarding current opportunities. Civil (environmental) P.E. and 8-25+ years experience is desired. Clear written and verbal communication skills, client interaction skills, and business development experience are also needed. Submit résumé to C. Cantrall at hr@westyost. com. Visit for more opportunities in Davis, Roseville, Santa Rosa & Pleasanton, CA and Portland, OR offices. EOE Engineer - Transportation Anderson County, SC Anderson County is seeking applicants for an Engineer position within its Roads and Bridges Department. Provides design and construction management of road and bridge projects, subdivision plan review and assists various county public works projects. Requires B.S.C.E. from an accredited institution w/two (2) years of related experience or any equivalent combination of education and experience. Registration as a South Carolina E.I.T. preferred. Fax résumé to Anderson County Personnel at (864) 260-1009 or via website at Anderson County is an Equal Opportunity Employer, M/F/H/V. Pre-employment drug testing and a valid SC Driver’s License are required.

City Engineer North Las Vegas, NV Join the City of North Las Vegas… Southern Nevada’s Employer of Choice! We offer: a four-day work week; fully-paid City Retirement Plan; no State Income Tax; no Social Security taxes; fully-paid Medical, Dental & Vision; and an excellent vacation/holiday leave plan. City Traffic Engineer, $82,698–$122,394/annually DOQ. Located at the northern tip of the Las Vegas Valley, North Las Vegas is one of the nation’s fastest growing large cities. North Las Vegas is characterized by its friendly atmosphere, development opportunities, civic pride and responsive government. The 82.1-square-mile city is surrounded by majestic mountains, desert valleys and an underlying current of dynamic growth. Sunshine is enjoyed 86% of the year with an average daily temperature of 78 degrees. A unique community to live, work and play, North Las Vegas has something for everyone including vacation, recreational, cultural and historical attractions. We are seeking a highly talented, experienced City Engineer to perform professional level planning, design and construction of traffic engineering and safetyrelated improvements. This includes coordinating assigned activities with other City departments, divisions, and outside agencies, addressing traffic-related concerns and providing recommendations for improvements. Our ideal candidate will possess a bachelor’s degree from an accredited four-year college or university in civil engineering, transportation or a related field, plus ten (10) years of increasingly responsible professional traffic engineering and/or field operations experience, including five years of administrative and supervisory responsibility. Professional Traffic Operations Engineer is highly desired. Position closes on July 16, 2008. We offer an attractive executive benefits package that includes 100% fully-paid employee contribution by North Las Vegas to the PERS plan, and 100% fully-paid employee contribution for medical benefits. If this exciting and challenging career opportunity interests you, please submit your completed City application by the closing date in person, via mail or online at our website. For more information, please contact City of North Las Vegas Human Resources Department, 2225 Civic Center Drive, Ste. 226, North Las Vegas, NV 89030. We are an Equal Opportunity Employer and welcome candidates from diverse backgrounds.

GIS data. Also includes providing technical, troubleshooting and training support to staff, and related tasks of data processing, mapmaking, database development, and reporting. Minimum of Associate’s Degree in GIS with two to five years experience, plus experience in geography, cartography or related field or equivalent experience. Course work in ArcView, ArcMap and ArcInfo is essential; Visual Basic, SQL and Access is desired and CarteGraph a plus. Starting Salary: $45,178 to $56,139 For more information, please visit www. Please send résumé to McHenry County HR, 2200 N. Seminary Ave, Woodstock, IL 60098. Fax: (815) 334-4648. E-mail: Civil Engineer (EIT) Ashland, WI (Pop. 8,502) Candidates must have a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering or closely-related field. Internship experience in a municipal engineering or construction setting desired. Equivalent combination of education/experience may be considered. Salary: $40,000–$44,000 DOQ with generous fringe benefit package. For complete application packet (required) visit City’s website, Deadline: June 27, 2008.

GIS Specialist McHenry County, IL McHenry County, a rapidly growing community northwest of Chicago, is seeking a full-time GIS Specialist. The position will develop, coordinate and maintain a GIS system with a focus on Transportation. Duties will include aiding in the collection, storage, maintenance and dissemination of

July 2008

APWA Reporter


Products in the News

Classically-styled Sigma lantern introduced by Sun Valley Lighting Sigma, a graceful full-cutoff outdoor fixture, is now available from Sun Valley Lighting, manufacturer of historical luminaires for civic and commercial sites. With traditional “gas lamp” styling, Sigma features a rounded dome with detailed rim and curved supports. It is designed for wall or pole mounting (up to 20’) and enhances both restoration and new projects. Sigma is engineered with state-of-the-art optics and weather-resistant materials. The hood houses a segmented aluminum reflector enclosed in a high-impact, clear-tempered glass lens. Type II, III, IV and V-SQ light distribution patterns are available. Fixtures are dark sky compliant and UL-listed for wet locations. For more information about the Sigma series, contact Sun Valley Lighting at (800) 877-6537 or visit the website at www.

PinPoint – Public Works™ dramatically lowers fuel costs, and a whole lot more… The simple truth is that everyone’s Pain is at the Pump. Fuel prices are threatening the continuation of services like curbside debris removal, snow abatement, and many other public services. PinPoint – Public Works™ is a simple and surprisingly affordable solution that will reduce costs by as much as 30%-60%. Incorporating this system into your operations could yield enough savings in fuel alone to offset the last two years of price increases. Not to mention that the system simultaneously yields additional savings from reductions in manpower, on-job accidents, and equipment wear and tear. Finally, an equal reduction in carbon fuel emissions is a healthy by-product of using PinPoint – Public Works™. Visit for more information or call (888) 477-9494. 92

APWA Reporter

July 2008

Vanguard ADA Systems announces new cost-effective disposable traffic cones Vanguard ADA Systems, a firm well known for safety products in ADA fields, recently branched out to include its most recent product: DisposaCones, the world’s first disposable traffic barricade system. Folding flat and made of biodegradable paper with a small butyl (tar) adhesive strip on the base that keeps them attached to any dry hard surface, they can be picked up by onsite personnel while the contractor whose work needs protecting can send their people to other projects, instead of clogging freeways and wasting valuable resources picking up products that aren’t even as valuable as the resources spent to retrieve them in the first place. Sized perfectly to fit motorcycle saddlebags, emergency preparedness kits, construction trucks, buses, mail carriers and the like, DisposaCones are available at and soon at retail outlets worldwide.

Electricallyheated blankets by GreenHeat Technology GreenHeat Technology’s patented powerblanket brand of electrically-heated blankets is the ideal heat solution for most cold-weather construction needs including ground thaw, concrete cure and drum heating. The powerblanket drum heater is a highly-efficient, low-wattage heater available in 12V and 120V. The patented heat-spreading technology and insulated full-coverage design reduces the amount of wattage required to obtain optimal heat. This provides a low-energy and efficient source of heat for a variety of materials including water, gases, biodiesel fuels, epoxies and resins. For more information call (877) 927-6432 or visit www.

The SonoBlaster! ® Dual Alert™ Work Zone Intrusion Alarm A new concept in work zone intrusion protection, the SonoBlaster is an impact-activated safety device that warns both roadway workers and errant vehicles simultaneously to help prevent injuries in our roadway work zones. Upon impact by an errant vehicle, the SonoBlaster’s built-in CO2-powered horn blasts for 15 seconds at 125 dB to signal workers that their protective zone has been violated, allowing them critical reaction time to move out of harm’s way. The SonoBlaster’s loud alarm sound can also alert drowsy drivers, allowing them to steer out of the work zone or brake prior to reaching workers or equipment. Distracted drivers are a major cause of work zone crashes! For more information call Transpo Industries, Inc. at (914) 636-1000 or visit

ClearTainers, Inc.™ introduces ClearMax™ for stationary visible recycling ClearTainers, Inc., makers of the ClearStream® recycler, the most widely used portable recycling containers in the U.S., has introduced its first stationary system – ClearMax™. ClearMax units are the perfect system for parks, cityscapes, convention centers or public buildings, etc.— everywhere that real, visible recycling is needed. All-weather ClearMax is made of rugged quarter-inch wire and 14 gauge recycled steel plate and tubing. It is available in a galvanized zinc or recycling blue powder coated finish. A lockable front door and slide-out drawer provide convenient, secure access and make it very easy to change the plastic bag, which holds 35 gallons of recyclables. For more information call (800) 872-8241 or visit

Kasi Infrared brings unprecedented ease and safety to Asphalt Repair The next leap in asphalt repair technology has now occurred. Kasi Infrared has brought unprecedented safety and ease to infrared

asphalt repair with their new Pro Heat Minute Man system. Reclaimer doors are raised and lowered with hydraulics, making operation hands-off and far safer and easier. Two hydraulic cylinders control the up-and-down operation of the chamber. A ramp facilitates the easy and safe movement of the roller—it can simply be walked off and on. All-hydraulic operation rounds what is already the “Cadillac of infrared repair systems.” Kasi’s converters have the longest life and the highest fuel efficiency in the industry. Converters are all stainless steel, as is all gas piping. For more information call Kasi Infrared at (800) 450-8602 or visit

ACS Industries Grapple Buckets ACS Industries offers two styles of Wheel Loader Grapple Buckets. Both the Scrap Grapple and Trash Grapple-style buckets are designed to offer up to 30% additional material handling capacity for all sizes of wheel loaders. ACS Grapple Buckets are available with bolt-on edges, rubber edges, as well as expanded metal grating. Applications include trash transfer stations, recycling facilities, municipal cleanup, storm debris handling and demolition debris sorting. Grapple Buckets are available with standard pin-on or coupler equipped mounting. ACS Industries has locations in Kent, Ohio and Arlington, Washington allowing a full product offering to be shipped from either location. For more information visit or call (800) 321-2348.

Avery Dennison™ launches new reflective product Avery Dennison Graphics & Reflective Products Division has launched EG10™ (Engineer Grade 10), a special engineer grade reflective sheeting that will meet federal minimum reflectivity standards and can be used on stop, yield and speed limit signs. EG10™ reflective sheeting is the only engineer grade product manufactured in the United States with up to 10-year durability. “EG10™ reflective sheeting offers consistent reflectivity over a range of entrance angles and will meet the new federal minimum reflectivity standard,” said Kevin Brinker, Reflective Product Manager for Avery Dennison Graphics & Reflective Products Division. For more information call (800) 327-5917 or visit

July 2008

APWA Reporter


North American Snow Conference April 26-29, 2009 Des Moines, IA

...a pattern of excellence Program/Project Management Right of Way & Real Property Acquisition Appraisal/Appraisal Review Relocation Assistance Property Management Title & Utility Research & Coordination

Paragon Partners Ltd. 1-888-899-7498

Safe & Dependable APWA Reporter ad 2.125 X 2.3125 02/26/2007

Automatic & Semi Automatic Tarp Systems construction engineering services in the chicagoland area

Simply The Best! (800) 368-3075

Single- vs. Dual-Stream Recycling: One Size Doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t Fit All July 17, 2008

DANNENBAUM Water Supply Systems

Wastewater Treatment Facilities

Hydrologic & Hydraulic Studies


Houston 713.520.9570 Austin 512.345.8505 Dallas

F t Worth 817.763.8883 McAllen 956.682.3677


Engineers Planners



APWA Reporter

July 2008



Manhole adjustment problems? Need Help? We Have Solutions!


The Urban Forest Preserve and Protect August 7, 2008


IN HALF THE TIME Cut concrete forming time in half with Poly Meta Forms®. This revolutionary system out performs wood hands down. Ask about our “Sidewalk Construction Kit” designed for Public Works Crews.


641-672-2356 • 1-800-785-2526 Fax: 641-672-1038 Oskaloosa, Iowa

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July 2008

APWA Reporter


UPCOMING APWA EVENTS International Public Works Congress & Exposition

North American Snow Conference

2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013

2009 2010

Aug. 17-20 Sept. 13-16 Aug. 15-18 Sept. 18-21 Aug. 26-29 Aug. 25-28

New Orleans, LA Columbus, OH Boston, MA Denver, CO Indianapolis, IN Chicago, IL

Apr. 26-29 Apr. 18-21

Des Moines, IA Omaha, NE

For more information, contact Brenda Shaver at (800) 848-APWA or send e-mail to

For more information, contact Dana Priddy at (800) 848-APWA or send e-mail to

National Public Works Week: May 17-23, 2009 Always the third full week in May. For more information, contact Jon Dilley at (800) 848-APWA or send e-mail to

JULY 2008


6/29-7/2 Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering, 52nd Annual Meeting, Toronto, ON,


StormCon, the North American Surface Water Quality Conference & Exposition, Orlando, FL,

11-15 National Association of Counties, 2008 Annual Conference & Exposition, Kansas City, MO,


APWA: Click, Listen & Learn, “Urban Forestry,” (800) 848APWA,



Southeastern Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, SASHTO 2008 Conference, Orlando, FL,

APWA: Click, Listen & Learn, “Single- vs. Dual-Stream Recycling: One Size Doesn’t Fit All,” (800) 848-APWA,

24-27 National Society of Professional Engineers, NSPE 2008 Annual Conference, Portland, OR,

17-20 APWA: 2008 International Public Works Congress & Exposition, New Orleans, LA, (800) 848-APWA,

INDEX OF ADVERTISERS When you contact an advertiser regarding a product, please tell them you saw their ad in the APWA Reporter. Thanks! – The Editor Legend: IFC = Inside Front Cover; IBC = Inside Back Cover; BC = Back Cover Access Products Inc., p. 27

Harris & Associates, p. IFC

Pulltarps Manufacturing, p. 94

Brandon Industries, Inc., p. 24

Henke Manufacturing Corp., p. 94

Schonstedt Instrument Company, p. 95

Burns & McDonnell, p. 95

Holt Technologies, p. 95

Schwarze Industries, p. 37

Caterpillar, p. IBC

Icon Group, p. 94

Seal Master, p. 38

CDM, p. 23

Info Tech, Inc., p. BC

Spin Screed, p. 62

Dannenbaum Engineering Company, p. 94

Manhole Adjustible Riser Co., p. 95

Sterling Trucks, p. 7

Metal Forms Corporation, p. 95

StormCon, p. 40

M.J. Harden Associates, Inc., p. 94

Sun Valley Lighting, p. 59

Mobile Awareness, LLC, p. 95

thomas engineering group, llc., p. 94

NTech Industries, Inc., p. 94

Transpo Industries, Inc., p. 42

O.R. Colan Associates, p. 94

Upper Iowa University, p. 2

PacifiCAD, p. 95

Vanguard ADA Systems, p. 21

Paragon Partners Ltd., p. 94

WEST Consultants, Inc., p. 95

PBS&J, p. 30

The Willdan Group of Companies, pp. 88, 95

DEL Hydraulics, p. 31 Designovations, Inc., p. 95 Dixie Chopper, p. 65 East Jordan Iron Works, p. 32 Enterprise Information Solutions, p. 13 ESI Consultants, Ltd, p. 51 ESRI, p. 1 Gee Asphalt Systems, Inc., pp. 64, 94 GreenHeat Technology, p. 61


APWA Reporter

July 2008

PinPoint GeoTech, LLC, p. 36 Precision Concrete Cutting, p. 20

Zanetis Power Attachments, Inc., p. 48


“We know we’re making the right call when we buy Cat® equipment.” When the Public Works Department in Tuscaloosa County, Alabama, solicits bids for heavy equipment, purchase price is just one factor it considers, says Engineering Coordinator Michael Henderson. “If there’s a disaster in our area, we need to know our equipment, and our dealer will come through for us. We must know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that the equipment is ready to work because response time is critical.” Factoring in Life Cycle Costs when purchasing equipment is equally important to Mike. “It’s in the county’s best long-term interests to consider total costs. When we choose Cat® equipment, we can be confident we’re getting a quality machine, backed by a strong company and dealer. We also know that when it’s time to cycle it out, there will be value left in that equipment.”

The National Institute of Governmental Purchasing (NIGP), National Association of State Procurement Officials (NASPO) and National Association of Fleet Administrators (NAFA) endorse the use of Life Cycle Costing as a preferred procurement method.

© 2008 Caterpillar All Rights Reserved

CAT, CATERPILLAR, their respective logos, “Caterpillar Yellow” and the POWER EDGE trade dress, as well as corporate and product identity used herein, are trademarks of Caterpillar and may not be used without permission.

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Public Works Projects of the Year! and the Annual Transportation Issue AMERICAN PUBLIC WORKS ASSOCIATION • JULY 2008 • AMERICAN...