Infrastructure in the News: June 26, 2012
Reuters: Senators optimistic deal close on transport bill
Senators involved in marathon talks on a two-year deal for funding U.S. road, bridge and rail projects said on Monday they were close to a compromise with House Republicans, although they might need to work through a Friday deadline to finish negotiations. They declined to talk about specifics, or address whether the potential deal would include a measure to approve the Canada-to-Texas Keystone XL oil pipeline, which has been a major hurdle.
Marketplace: Congress pressed to pass transportation bill
The end of this week marks the end of June which marks the end of the fiscal year for many companies. It also marks the end of federal funding for highway construction and other transportation projects, unless of course lawmakers in Washington can agree on an extension of the transportation bill.
Transportation Issues Daily: Three Scenarios if Time Runs Out on Transportation Negotiation
There are three scenarios if Congress cannot enact a transportation bill by Friday night when SAFETEA-LU expires, and Congress departs for a July 4 in-state work period). The scenarios depend almost exclusively on the answer to one question: how close are negotiators to a deal? We’ll know the answer by Tuesday night or Wednesday morning.
Journal of Commerce: Panama Canal Completes Building First Pacific Lock Section
The contracting group that is building the new set of locks at the Panama Canal completed the first monolith of the new locks on the Pacific end of the canal. The monolith is the first of 46 such structures to be completed in the upper chamber of the Pacific locks.
The massive concrete and steel structure is 111 feet high, 24.6 feet wide and 88.6 feet deep, and is located in the upper chamber’s east side. Enormous culverts, which are part of the system that fills and empties the locks, will run along the lock walls, which are made up of these monoliths.
Fast Lane: TIGER 2012 projects keep freight, economy moving
At the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, the motto is, "Acta non verba. "It means, "Actions, not words," and I've been thinking about it a lot since we announced our TIGER 2012 awards last Friday. Because, with these 47 projects, this Administration continues to take bold steps to keep America's economy moving.
San Francisco Examiner: Wheel, rail or sail, transit prices are going
Fares start increasing this weekend on several Bay Area transit agencies and the move is becoming a rite of summer for riders. Muni, BART, Caltrain and Golden Gate Transit will all implement fare hikes beginning Sunday. They are modest, but the cumulative effect of years of increases has driven the cost of transit up significantly.
Las Vegas Sun: State mulls plan for toll road system
Allowing a toll road system in Nevada got a cool reception from the state Board of Transportation on Monday. Gov. Brian Sandoval said the state must look at all possibilities for paying for future road construction, but he and other board members said they wanted to see more financial details. A proposal for toll roads was rejected by the 2011 Legislature. The state uses gasoline and special fuel taxes and federal funds to pay for the road building.
Moving 10% of long-distance trucking by rail would save over a billion gallons of fuel per year.