As 2015 comes to an end, we’ve compiled the most popular blog posts of the year according to you – our readers. Whether we’re explaining important issues or offering an inside look at some of our most complicated projects, you have followed along – and helped us celebrate some major milestones too. From our Florida Polytechnic University project being named Engineering News-Record’s Global Project of the Year to testing exciting new technology that will advance project safety, 2015 has been a year of Building What Matters.
We’re proving that even heavy civil construction can be sustainable at our Elizabeth River Tunnels project, a public-private partnership project in Virginia.
Below are our 10 most popular blog posts of 2015, ranked in order:
1. What will it take to rebuild and upgrade our country’s crumbling infrastructure? Public-private partnerships (PPPs) are an innovative solution to help governments deliver much-needed U.S. infrastructure projects, from bridges and roads to hospitals and airports. We break down how design-build-finance-operate-maintain PPPs work in our infographic: Rebuilding (and financing) America’s infrastructure through public private partnerships.
2. We’re exploring how virtual reality, real-time location systems, drones and other technologies can be used to improve project safety and provide higher levels of customer service. Tony Colonna, senior vice president of our Innovative Construction Solutions group, examines how these three emerging technologies may help improve jobsite safety.
3. On September 11, General Superintendent Mark Irvin wrote a heartfelt tribute to the victims of 9/11, and shared the immense pride, passion and commitment that he and many others have from helping reconstruct the World Trade Center. Read his inspiring essay: From atop the Empire State Building on 9/11, pride in our work rebuilding the World Trade Center.
Skanska cranes in action as we worked to build the Oculus entrance portal to the World Trade Center Transportation Hub last year, part of the ongoing rebuilding effort.
4. Houston’s 35-story Capitol Tower office project – for which Skanska is both developer and builder – involved a complicated 19-hour and 20-minute concrete pour to establish the structure’s nine-and-a-half-foot thick mat foundation. Our planning was so precise that we finished the pour within three minutes of our estimate. Check out the time-lapse video here: A 20-hour concrete pour, planned to the minute.
5. In Washington, D.C., we’re creating ice walls of up to nearly 10 feet thick to help us safely construct vertical shafts as part of our project to alleviate flooding in two densely populated neighborhoods. Learn more about how we’re freezing the ground in D.C.
6. At Miami’s Patricia and Phillip Frost Museum of Science , we assembled 32 concave orange peel-like pieces to form a full dome planetarium. Each panel weighed about 50,000 pounds and required 24-hour-a-day/seven-day-a-week work over two-and-a-half weeks to place and connect each panel. Here’s how we did it: In Miami, successfully assembling an “orange.”
In the foreground, 32 concave pieces make up the planetarium at Miami’s iconic Patricia and Phillip Frost Museum of Science.
7. Regional Environmental Manager Carissa Agnese challenged our joint venture team at Virginia’s Elizabeth River Tunnels project to take sustainable construction of a civil infrastructure project to a higher level. See how we rose to the challenge: If you don’t think heavy civil construction projects can be green, think again.
8. Wendy (Li) MacLeod-Roemer isn’t just a senior project manager: this past year she also finished her doctorate in organization management at Stanford University. In her thesis, she explored how lean manufacturing-inspired performance management can transform construction projects. For key takeaways on performance management and her research – including what leads to happier customers – check out her post: This thesis shows how performance management can improve client satisfaction.
9. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the single greatest safety risk on a construction site is falling. Aerial work platforms are safer than ladders for working at heights, but even AWPs have risks. In this post by Chief EHS Officer Paul Haining, learn how we’re taking aerial work platform safety to new heights.
10. Last but definitely not least: in 2015 our Innovation, Science and Technology Building project at Florida Polytechnic University won Engineering News-Record (ENR) magazine’s highest honor: Global Project of the Year. In this blog post, we explore what it took to bring to life this intricate design from world-renowned architect Santiago Calatrava: The path to ENR magazine’s highest honor.