Underground sewer infrastructure is an often-forgotten piece of the public infrastructure puzzle that creates the opportunity for us to live and build strong, happy communities. Although it’s not something we think about daily, it is one thing that provides value to the quality of our daily lives. We don’t worry about sewer infrastructure on a daily basis because it’s typically out of sight, unlike roadways and buildings; however, the underground infrastructure is just as important. Just as the condition of our cars requires maintenance and may even deteriorate over time without it, so does the condition of our sewer infrastructure.
What is our why at LDA Engineering?
Simply put… We serve communities to help make them stronger and happier. Hmmm…so what does that look like?
Strong communities have reliable, adequate and accessible infrastructure for basic needs and mobility, along with good capital improvement plans to meet the growing needs of today and well into the future.
The Tennessee Chapter of the American Public Works Association (TCAPWA) and the Solid Waste Association of America (SWANA) held their annual conference from October 21 – 23, 2018. Hosted by the TCAPWA Middle Branch, the event was held at the Doubletree Downtown Hotel in Nashville.
By Emily Kelly, PE
While we wish there were a free lunch, or in the case of drinking water and wastewater project funding, a grant, those days appear to be gone forever. Increasingly, financially strapped communities find themselves looking at repairing aging infrastructure. In many cases, however, the aging infrastructure can no longer be repaired; it is unsafe for public health or is inadequate for the population. When repair is not possible and replacement is necessary, there are several options for cities, counties, utility districts, and water authorities searching for lower-cost loans, such as the State Revolving Fund (SRF) Loan Program, USDA grants/loans, the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program, Tennessee Municipal League (TML) loans, and the bond market.
By Stephanie Livingston, PLA, EI
Our last blog post, “Global Streets: Part 1”, focused on how streets around the world are transitioning to become quality spaces for all. As we continue to examine the National Association of City Transportation Official’s (NACTO) Global Street Design Guide, it is important to consider how these concepts can be applied to our local communities in Tennessee and surrounding areas. While streets around the world are transitioning to become quality spaces for all, Tennesseans can not only follow strong examples for creating a stunning and functional backdrop for public life but also lead in activating positive change in our own environments.
By Stephanie Livingston, PLA, EI
The National Association of City Transportation Official (NACTO)’s Global Street Design Guide, published in 2016, is a useful resource that shows how streets around the world are transitioning to become quality spaces for all. In a sense, streets are outdoor rooms with the ground being the floor, building edges being the walls, and a canopy of trees or other overhead elements being the ceiling. As such, they form a dynamic backdrop for public life and can be a catalyst for transformation.
Property experts will tell you the three most important factors in real estate are location, location, location. And while the condition and price of a property often changes over time, the location remains the same. Recognizing the vital role that a downtown location plays in the life of a community, the City of Johnson City sought to create desirability and demand for a few strategic, downtown parcels by alleviating flooding that had plagued the area for decades.
By Kim Chaney-Bay
As part of our ongoing STEM education outreach efforts, LDA Engineering was pleased to participate as a booth exhibitor at this year’s “Institute for CTE Educators” conference sponsored by the Tennessee Department of Education / Career and Technical Education. The conference, held at the Music City Center in Nashville, was attended by over 1,400 career and technical education (CTE) teachers and directors across Tennessee.
By Wade Knapper
Funding capital improvement projects is often a top priority for utility districts and municipalities. Especially if the system is experiencing growth. Large districts benefit from municipal bond ratings, providing access to bond markets with a relatively low cost of borrowing. However, many smaller utility districts may find the process of obtaining a bond rating to be cost-prohibitive. Additionally, the prospect of increasing utility rates at a pace fast enough to fund large capital projects demands multiple levels of stakeholder buy-in that require large amounts of time and resources. So, what other alternatives are available to fund those necessary capital projects?