Panel finds concrete pavements equal to coming decades’ demands

Sources: American Concrete Pavement Association, Rosemont, Ill.; CP staff

The American Concrete Pavement Association’s 16-page treatise, “VISION2040: The Future of Concrete Pavement Imagined,” provides a glimpse of transportation policy, planning and project execution over the next 20 years; describes anticipated agency or project owner needs; forecasts how rigid pavements will serve various functions; explains how the association and allies will shape the future; and, indicates the great potential for infrastructure safety, performance and value if stakeholders invest and collaborate effectively along the way. 

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Road Builders project modest transportation market gains in new year

Source: American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA), Washington, D.C. 

ARTBA Chief Economist Dr. Alison Premo Black projects a 4.2 percent year-over-year increase for the 2019 transportation infrastructure market, reflecting higher federal, state and local government investment across all modes. Total U.S. transportation construction and related-market activity is projected to eclipse $278 billion in 2019, up from this year’s trending tally of nearly $267 billion.

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White House envisions shift of Corps functions to Transportation, Interior

Report

As part of sweeping Executive Branch reform announced late last month, the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) proposes to move Army Corps of Engineers Civil Works functions—coastal and inland commercial navigation programs; flood and storm damage reduction; and, aquatic ecosystem restoration—from the Department of Defense to the Departments of Transportation and Interior (DOT, DOI).

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Transportation agencies put proposed sleep apnea testing to rest

Sources: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA); CP staff

FMCSA and the Federal Railroad Administration have withdrawn a March 2016 advance notice of proposed rulemaking concerning the prevalence of moderate-to-severe obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) among individuals occupying safety-sensitive highway or rail transportation positions. The agencies believe that current safety programs and FRA’s rulemaking addressing fatigue risk management are the appropriate avenues to address OSA.

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Construction materials stakeholders champion Transportation Secretary Chao

Sources: Portland Cement Association, Skokie, Ill.; National Stone, Sand & Gravel Association, Washington, D.C.; CP staff

The U.S. Senate’s January 31 confirmation of Elaine Chao as Secretary of Transportation, by a 93-6 vote, drew enthusiastic response from the two groups representing concrete producers’ principal suppliers.

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Road Builders project minor boost in 2017 highway, bridge activity

Sources: American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA), Washington, D.C.; CP staff

Total transportation construction and related market activity is expected to grow 1.3 percent in 2017, driven largely by increases in highway and bridge work supporting residential and commercial developments. ARTBA Chief Economist Dr. Alison Premo Black projects spending to reach $248 billion, up from an estimated $245 billion in 2016. 

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Report stresses links between pavement properties, fuel efficiency targets

Armed with “Comprehensive Transportation Fuel Reduction Policies —A Comparison of Heavy Truck Fuel Efficiency and Rigid Pavement Policies,” Portland Cement Association calls for roads and pavement structures to be included in forthcoming U.S. Environmental Protection Agency heavy-duty truck fuel standards through which the White House aims to cut greenhouse gas levels.

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Materials Group: Highway authorization warrants years, not months

Sources: Portland Cement Association, Washington, D.C.; CP staff

On behalf of members representing concrete and asphalt interests, the Highway Materials Group calls on Congress to pass a longer term transportation authorization bill following a temporary highway and bridge funding patch approved as Capitol Hill approached an August recess.

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Top ASTM Honor To NRMCA’s Lobo

ASTM International

In addition to centennial observances in Toronto, ASTM Committee C09 recognized NRMCA Senior Vice President of Engineering Colin Lobo with the Award of Merit and ASTM Fellow title. As the Society’s highest individual recognition, the award is based on nominations from peers citing candidates’ service on a range of levels. The committee underscores Lobo’s “outstanding contributions to technology transfer, specifications for concrete materials, test methods for fresh and hardened concrete, evaluation of data, and assessment of laboratories.”

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