How’s URS doing on CapX EIS?

Filed under:Hampton-Alma-LaCrosse,RUS EIS — posted by admin on June 23, 2012 @ 8:11 am

How is URS doing on the CapX 2020 Hampton-Rochester-LaCrosse environmental review?  Who knows… it STILL isn’t out.

USDA’s web page for CapX 2020 Hampton-Rochester-La Crosse transmission

From the Star Tribune, an article about the Sabo bridge collapse — a bridge designed by URS:

7bridge0221

A set of cables on the bridge broke loose in February because of wind-induced vibrations, a consultant said Friday, noting that the stresses generated by winds as light as 5 to 10 miles per hour might have been overlooked by the engineers who designed it. The designer, California-based URS Corp., also did work on the Interstate 35W bridge over the Mississippi River before it collapsed in 2007.

URS was hired by the state of Minnesota for bridge inspections — here’s the 35W bridge gussets from MPR:

urs-gussetsAnd then this…

urs-collapse

From a P.I. firm involved with the bridge collapse:

The state alleges that the URS contract specifically required the company to develop tension and compression failure criteria for the bridge’s many components — including the steel gusset plates — using data from how they were supposed to be designed.

URS Corp. is a San Francisco based firm, that had assured the state of its expertise in assessing the need for repairs and the best way to go about doing the repairs. Furthermore, in 2005, URS reported to the state that if “gusset plate buckling occurs, it will not be catastrophic.” In a communication from the corporation in 2006, they told MN-DOT that they would not calculate actual capacities of all of the connections even though that would provide the most accurate results. They said it would be too much work. They proposed to do some approximate but conservative adjustments to the member capacities per design specifications.

And, as above, URS has the contract the Federal Environmental Review for the CapX 2020 Hampton-Rochester-LaCrosse transmission line.

USDA’s web page for CapX 2020 Hampton-Rochester-La Crosse transmission

They’ve done other work for RUS:

Oglethorpe Power Corporations 100 MW biomass project

Turning Point Solar

and on and on and on…

Should RUS be doing this sort of work?  Who would award them with a contract?  The State of Minnesota, City of Minneapolis, are wondering… the STrib is looking at other instances:

URS faulted in projects elsewhere

Check the examples in the STrib article — how many of these do we need?

urs-collapse3


one comment so far »

  1. Why do government officials continue to grant projects to a firm that has demonstrated that they don’t take their job seriously? Who is passing money under the table to secure these jobs for them? We, the taxpayers, continue to pay and pay for failures by smug corporations who do sub-standard work knowing that in many cases they get away with this. WHO IS IN CHARGE THESE DAYS??? Penny wise and pound foolish seems to rule the day.

    Comment by A. Tuxen — June 26, 2012 @ 10:52 am

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image: detail of installation by Bronwyn Lace