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IBHS launches new program to create hurricane-resistant homes

Tampa, Fla. — The Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS) is launching a new program called FORTIFIED Home – Hurricane designed to help homeowners build safer, stronger new homes, and retrofit existing homes to make them more resistant to hurricanes.

New HNTB white paper addresses rapid changes in toll technology facing transportation agencies

Kansas City, Mo. — A new white paper from HNTB Corporation addresses crucial questions about the future of rapidly changing toll technology. Now available on the firm's website, the paper provides insights to help transportation agencies and toll authorities address the difficulty of determining the return on investment for those considering large-scale technological restructuring.

Federal Railroad administrator challenges Southeast states to develop shared vision for rail service

Richmond, Va. — Federal Railroad Administrator Joseph C. Szabo called on elected officials and transportation planners in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia to develop a shared vision of rail service along the Southeast High-Speed Rail Corridor (SEHSR) between Washington, D.C. and Atlanta. Szabo’s challenge came as he addressed members and supporters of Virginians for High-Speed Rail during their 20th anniversary luncheon in Richmond.

Contractor details repair work plan for SR 99 tunneling machine

Seattle — Bertha, the State Route 99 tunneling machine, has always been big. The focus now is on rebuilding Bertha and making her better, according to a new repair work plan unveiled Monday, June 16, by Seattle Tunnel Partners, the Washington State Department of Transportation’s design-build contractor for the SR 99 Tunnel Project.

National Disaster Resilience Competition announced

Washington, D.C. — Responding to demand from state, local and tribal leaders who are working to increase the safety and security of their communities, the nearly $1 billion National Disaster Resilience Competition will invite communities that have experienced natural disasters to compete for funds to help them rebuild and increase their resilience to future disasters.

Atkins-designed ARFF station at Southwest Florida International Airport earns LEED Gold Certification

Fort Myers, Fla. — Designed by Atkins and completed in June 2013, the Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) Station at Southwest Florida International Airport has recently earned LEED Gold Certification for sustainable design and construction from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and Green Building Certification Institute. The $15.7 million, 31,000-square-foot facility is the first public/government building in Lee County, Florida to receive a LEED Gold rating.

$102 million in coastal resilience grants to help Atlantic coast communities

New York — Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell announced $102.7 million in competitive matching grants to support 54 projects along the Atlantic coast. The grants will fund science-based solutions to restore wetlands and other natural areas, better manage stormwater using green infrastructure, and assist states, tribes, and local communities in protecting themselves from major storms such as Hurricane Sandy, which devastated much of the East Coast in 2012.

Transit: Final link in U.S. multimodal transportation system

Kansas City, Mo. — According to Liz Rao, vice president and chair, public transit services for HNTB Corporation, public transportation is the “final link” in a truly multimodal, modern transportation network. In a new viewpoint, published on HNTB’s website, Rao says recent spikes in nationwide public transportation ridership clearly show the relevance of National Dump the Pump Day, created by the American Public Transportation Association. “Successful communities thrive when there is a healthy mix of transportation choices,” she said.

Parsons Brinckerhoff named Employer of the Year by WTS Portland Chapter

Portland, Ore. — Parsons Brinckerhoff was named Employer of the Year by the Portland, Ore., chapter of WTS International. The firm was recognized by WTS Portland for its commitment to equality in the workplace, the participation of its employees in professional organizations such as WTS, and its diversity initiatives to promote opportunities for women and minorities within the company.

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