July 2012 - Infrastructure Digest

Waste Stream to Revenue Stream

“The City of Killeen, Texas, and the Bell CountyWater Control & Improvement District No. 1 have turned biosolids from three wastewater treatment plants into a source of revenue with a composting facility that opened last summer.” Long article with numbers and details for turning sludge and brush into compost and money. TPO, July 2012

From Drawers to the Desktop

“The City of Saco (Maine) Public Works Department recorded maintenance on its sewer and stormwater systems on sheets of paper and index cards. Management stored the information in file cabinets by street, and the city has 300 of them.” A very detailed look at the use of Azteca Cityworks to digitize paper plans and get them into a GIS. MSW, July 2012

Sizing Up your Bypass Pumping Operation

“Step 4: Determine how much surcharge is allowable in the manhole. This amount will vary depending on that specific manhole.” A very detailed, 8-step, approach to getting this critical task right. Trenchless Technology, 6-12-2012

Geothermal Energy Equals Cost Savings

“A geothermal unit, installed inside the building, uses electrically driven compressors and heat exchangers in a vapor compression cycle (the same principle as employed in a refrigerator) to concentrate the earth’s energy and release it inside the building at a higher temperature. In typical systems, duct fans distribute the heat to various rooms.” Not very detailed, but an excellent overview of a sustainable system that seems on its way to becoming a mainstream solution.  FCP 6-22-2012

Stitch-Boring Keeps ‘Sweetest Place on Earth’ Unspoiled

“Sometimes referred to by installation crews with nicknames such as “gopher” and “missile,” the Mole model used by Oxenrider’s crews is a 4-ft long self-advancing pneumatic piercing tool that operates on 35 cfm of compressed air at 110 psi.” Good description of a trenchless technique I didn’t know much about. Especially good for gas line laterals. Trenchless Technology, 7-12-2012

Feature: Life on the Pipeline

“These projects primarily require site boundary and topographic surveying to support the preparation of plats and permit drawings for well pad development.  The most demanding projects, however, are the pipeline projects.” A description of life for one survey firm that decided to pursue work on the Marcellus Shale. Professional Surveyor, July 2012

Recycling For Profit

“… there are viable markets for recycled products ranging from asphalt to concrete to wood. The trick is to identify potential revenue streams…” Good long article that describes the recycling operations of several contractors. FCP, 6-22-2012


“It quickly became apparent that a native prairie restoration would provide the benefits we desired and mitigate the physical and political hazards that existed.” How one Iowa county addressed problem vegetation on roadsides with native plantings. Roads & Bridges, 6-6-2012

Niche Market Generates Success For Ethos Enterprises

“While many contractors view stamped asphalt as an add-on service, one Phoenix-based contractor has found great success in focusing in on this niche market.” Straightforward case study of a specialist in stamped asphalt, with a breakdown of clients and type of work. Good for paving and asphalt contractors. FCP, 6-18-2012

Oceanscience Launches Z-Boat for Shallow Water Hydrographic Surveys

“The Oceanscience Group (San Diego, CA) has recently launched the Z-Boat 1800 portable remotely-operated survey boat that brings high quality positioning and depth sounder instruments together on a convenient remote platform that can be launched and operated from practically anywhere.” It’s a practical way to do hydrographic surveying… and it’s a radio controlled boat; whee! The American Surveyor, 7-23-2012

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