The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey wants to build a $1.5 billion rail line to transport up to 12 million people per year between midtown Manhattan and LaGuardia Airport, and it is seeking an environmental consultant to review the project. The review may take up to 18 months.
ConstructConnect estimates that 50 airports in the US over the next three years will spend a total of $70 billion on construction projects, and seven of the largest airport construction projects in the world are detailed. Globally, ConstructConnect saw a 61% year-over-year increase in airport terminal construction activity.
Civil engineering professor Mehdi Saiidi from the University of Nevada at Reno is leading a project for the California Department of Transportation to examine the potential of accelerated bridge construction processes in improving the seismic resiliency of bridges. Saiidi's team so far has conducted three successful bridge shake table tests on a 100-ton, 70-foot-long ABC concrete bridge.
Philadelphia has released a seven-year transportation plan called Connect that seeks to tackle the city's plateauing bicycle commuting, rising traffic congestion and decreasing bus ridership. The plan takes a multimodal approach which, unlike other plans, will not entail waiting for government financing but rather will emphasize optimizing the city's existing resources, according to Philadelphia Managing Director Mike DiBerardinis.
Boston's $15 billion Central Artery/Tunnel Project, also known as the Big Dig, was marred by leaks and a collapsed ceiling panel, but experts now say it played an important role in revitalizing the city. The area above the tunnel has seen a major real estate boom, and that is partially due to planning that took place before the project was completed.
The National Highways Authority of India is to open bids on approximately 364 miles of roads for toll-operate-transfer rights, and three companies are expected to bid by Nov. 5. Bids are expected to be "less aggressive" than they were in the first round of the auction.
Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg writes that more charging stations are needed to improve the infrastructure for electric vehicles, and as the International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association's Bill Cramer writes, that brings tolling to the forefront as a potential funding source for future roads that support them. Bloomberg notes that one significant market barrier is the dearth of charging stations for electric vehicles.
California's Transportation Corridor Agencies has produced a study on potential options to relieve traffic in San Clemente, Calif. Public comment is being accepted on the study, and San Clemente is hosting a "Toll Road Town Hall" to educate the public.
Mercedes intends to offer self-driving technology in its upcoming S class vehicle; the company plans to eventually feature the technology in its lower-segment models. Audi has already adopted the system in the A8 sedan, but Volkswagen is less bullish and is looking at measures for automakers to share the liability costs of self-driving technology.
Malaysian Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir Bin Mohamad says tolls are necessary for the county to have well-maintained roads, noting that the private sector has no financial incentive to pay for roads unless it is profitable. "The only way to have freeways and no toll is to raise the price of petrol," he says.