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Structural Solutions: Engineers Need to Take Responsibility for Public-Safety Designs

March 24, 2017 - in Articles, Column

My wife and I have been in Charlotte, N.C., for quite some time now. We’ve watched it grow from a rather sleepy city in the early 1980s to a national banking center despite having to weather the recent financial crisis. Of course, growth means jobs, and…

Structural Solutions: The Power of Positive Thinking Lasts a Lifetime

January 31, 2017 - in Articles, Column

Although my daughters have almost finished college, it’s not (yet) difficult to remember when they were young. I was in scouting most of my young life—from…

Structural Solutions: Proper Communication – Engineers Need It Just Like Everyone Else

December 5, 2016 - in Articles, Column

I’m sure there are many readers of this column who can remember when the telephone was the only substitute for an in-person meeting—it wasn’t that…

Structural Solutions: We’re All Busy….

October 12, 2016 - in Column

As a business owner, you have to deal with a lot of things. Some are simple: Where to order copier paper? Where should we have the Christmas party this year? Others are not so simple: Is it time to consider moving the office to the cloud? How can we grow our…

Structural Solutions: Delegated Design or Delegated Engineering?

August 1, 2016 - in Column

If you didn’t make it to the 2016 NASCC conference this year, you missed a lot of excellent engineering sessions. One of the more-interesting sessions (at least for me) was titled “Delegated Connection Design: What Are the EORs Responsibilities?” As…

Structural Solutions: Picking Partners to Manage Risk

May 31, 2016 - in Column

In the previous issue of Informed Infrastructure, I wrote about how sometimes things happen in our lives that help us do better and avoid trouble later in life. The scout-leadership training obstacle course I talked about did just that (see “Managing Risk…

Structural Solutions: Managing Risk through Careful Planning

April 3, 2016 - in Column

In my later years in the Boy Scouts, the senior leaders took us older scouts on a leadership-training obstacle course—the equivalent of some of today’s office teamwork outings. One particularly memorable obstacle had two telephone pole uprights about six…

Structural Solutions: Engineering without a Net

January 31, 2016 - in Column

I was flipping around the cable channels a while back and happened across a show about “The Flying Wallendas.” I had heard of the Wallendas as a kid, but I didn’t realize they had been performing since the late 1700s, a remarkable seven generations.…

Structural Solutions: Add True Value to Command Fees You Deserve

November 21, 2015 - in Column

Many years ago, I left the security of the engineering firm I worked for right out of school and ventured out on my own. If you had asked me when I was hired after graduate school, I thought I would retire at that company. But that wasn’t the case, as I…

Structural Solutions: The State of the Engineer Address

September 30, 2015 - in Column

Adversities and challenges, particularly when they don’t end well, provide the opportunity to reflect on decisions and figure out what happened. Governments have “state of the union” addresses that explain perceived difficulties in the market as well…