Mastering railway design: Key insights into building sustainable railway systems
The U.S. freight rail network runs on almost 140,000 route miles. It is operated by seven Class I railroads with the highest operating revenues ($490 million or more), followed by 22 regional and 584 local/shortline railroads. The freight rail network accounts for about 40% of long-distance freight volume, highlighting the importance of robust, con...
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Your land acquisition due diligence checklist: A must-have for municipal leaders and developers
Investigating the legal, environmental and financial conditions of a property is imperative to the success of a commercial land acquisition. If you are a developer or a municipality considering a land remediation/redevelopment project, comprehensive land acquisition due diligence is necessary to make informed decisions during property negotiations....
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Understanding MS4 Permits: Managing stormwater systems and municipal obligations
From salting your driveway to blowing grass clippings into the street, there are plenty of things we do to affect our stormwater system. That's why the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency takes steps to regulate and monitor shared water systems. They do that through MS4 permits, which are short for Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems. These...
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Transportation forecasting: preparing for growth
What will traffic conditions in your community look like in the coming years?Are you worried an ever-increasing traffic flow will jeopardize the safety of your neighborhood streets?How do you ensure an accurate projection of traffic data to improve the quality and safety of traffic operations in your community? Transportation forecasting attempts t...
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Save time and money with a professional plan by a professional engineer
Engineering and environmental services are easy to gloss over at the onset of a project. It's not like concrete or construction workers – who take on pieces of a project for roads and bridges that you wouldn't dream of doing without. In the end, however, engineering services are the piece that keeps your project on time – and more importantly,...
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How to reduce municipal wastewater treatment plant energy consumption
Energy represents a significant expense across all stages of the wastewater treatment process — from raw sewage collection to effluent discharge. Wastewater treatment plants throughout the U.S. consume more than 30 terawatt hours per year of electricity, amounting to $2 billion in annual electric costs. Estimates suggest that electricity costs cons...
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Get grant funding to Rebuild Illinois downtowns, commercial corridors
There's more good news and more grant money available to help stimulate local economies throughout Illinois. The $50 million Rebuild Illinois Main Street and Downtown Capital Program is the latest effort to stimulate local economies in areas hit hardest during the COVID-19 pandemic. "This first-of-its-kind program recognizes and addresses the impac...
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Understanding and meeting municipal wastewater effluent standards
Understanding and meeting municipal wastewater effluent standards will improve the quality and sustainability of your community, and it is not a challenge you have to meet on your own. Municipalities representing a wide range of sizes, densities and resources have met these standards. With the right partner to guide you through the process - a...
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Solutions after struggle: Spending American Rescue Plan Act funds
Fehr Graham is working with communities across Illinois to develop strategies on how to win and invest their American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding. We are rapidly responding to emerging project needs and client priorities. Navigating the program and how to use the money can be a daunting task. Now is the time to act. And we're here to help. Gov. ...
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Funding management keeps infrastructure project on track
Because money can be one of the major challenges when it comes to completing infrastructure projects, having multiple funding sources on a project is like a dream come true. Having various resources to pay for work reduces the burden on taxpayers and the need for what can sometimes turn into lengthy fundraising efforts. That was the case when it wa...
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American Rescue Plan provides public infrastructure improvement opportunities
For those of us working to improve roads, water, sewer and the quality of life for all, it's an exciting time. After the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) passed on March 11, more than 19,000 municipalities in the U.S. will get money to make critical investments in water, sewer and broadband infrastructure. While the $195.3 billion allocated to state...
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Funding solutions equal more infrastructure opportunities for communities
Municipal leaders face difficult decisions every day. With limited budgets, they must choose which infrastructure improvements are most critical. That’s especially true in smaller communities. The Village of Tilton, Illinois, needed to make improvements to its wastewater infrastructure, specifically their Wastewater Treatment Plant, and financing t...
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Construction inspectors help build communities, relationships while managing expectations
States, counties, cities and towns of all sizes spend billions of dollars each year to improve infrastructure. As the budgets get tighter and the to-do lists get longer, it becomes more important to ensure the projects chosen each year are completed properly. Having someone on site to check the contractor’s work is one way to provide that assurance...
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GIS tools benefit projects, create valuable products
Geographic Information Systems (GIS) is a powerful tool that combines the information in your operator’s head, the data in your filing cabinet and real-world locations, such as aerial photography and field survey shots, and combines them into one computer program.    GIS is much more than a mapping program. Not only is the map a visual re...
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