December 2017 Newsletter Print

Dinner Meeting

: Wednesday Jan. 17, 2018
5:30 PM - Registration
6:00 PM - Dinner
Registration information coming soon.

LOCATION: Ohio University Inn, 331 Richland Ave., Athens, OH 45701

TOPIC: To Be Announced

SPEAKER: To Be Announced

MENU: Roasted Chicken Marsala or Roasted Vegetable Hominy (vegetarian option)

CPD HOURS: A certificate for one (1) Continuing Professional Development (CPD) hour will be issued at the conclusion of the presentation.

$20 ASCE Member
$15 ASCE Life Member
$10 ASCE Student
$25 Guest (not an ASCE member)


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President's Report

Central Ohio Section Members:

The December luncheon on the National Veterans Memorial and Museum was a great success, with nearly 50 people from ASCE and SEAoO in attendance.  Thanks to Nigel Carter and Kyle Krieger from Turner Construction for sharing the innovative architectural and challenging construction aspects of this interesting project.  It is great that this national memorial honoring America’s veterans will be located in Central Ohio.

Congratulations to ASCE Younger Member Phillip Hinson, PE, MPP for being chosen as a 2018 NSPE Federal Engineer of the Year Award from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration!  Phillip was selected for this award from over 1,200 engineers employed by the VA and will be honored at a luncheon and ceremony in Washington, D.C. on February 23, 2018.  Phillip was previously named an ASCE 2009 New Face of Civil Engineering, so this is the second time he has been recognized nationally.

Finally, I want to draw your attention to a Columbus Dispatch letter to the editor authored by Jim Pajk, PE which discusses the 50th anniversary of the Silver Bridge collapse over the Ohio River.  This tragic event led to the establishment of the National Bridge Inspection Standards and speaks to the need for infrastructure funding.  With Jim’s permission, his letter will be reprinted to our December newsletter.

I wish you a happy and blessed holiday season, and hope that you have a prosperous 2018!

Chris Nye
President – ASCE Central Ohio Section


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Silver Bridge - Dispatch Op-Ed

For full Columbus Dispatch version click HERE.

December 15, 2017 - Today, Dec. 15, marks the 50th anniversary of a tragic event that changed how our nation ensures bridge safety. On that date in 1967, the Silver Bridge over the Ohio River, connecting Point Pleasant, West Virginia, and Gallipolis, Ohio, collapsed, resulting in 46 individuals losing their lives from this catastrophe.

This event led to the establishment of the National Bridge Inspection Standards (NBIS), which require all bridges with a span of at least 20 feet to be inspected at least once every two years. Not long after this, Ohio legislators took these requirements a step further by passing a law requiring all bridges at least 10 feet in length to be inspected annually.

Today, more than 43,000 bridge-inspection reports are signed each year by professional engineers to ensure Ohioans’ safety. The challenge for infrastructure in Ohio, which has the second-highest inventory of bridges in the country, is the continuing need to find additional revenue to pay for repairs and replacement of structures. In Ohio, approximately 2,000 bridges are considered structurally deficient.

The American Society of Civil Engineers released its 2017 national Infrastructure Report Card, which assigned a grade of “C+” to our nation’s bridges. The federal gas tax, 18.4 cents per gallon, and Ohio’s gas tax, 28 cents per gallon, have not been adjusted since 1993 and 2006, respectively. The state, counties and municipalities rely on this income to fund much-needed bridge and road projects. Inflation, increased fuel efficiency, and more hybrid and electric vehicles have led to flat revenue streams for most of these agencies.

Congress continues to transfer money from other sources to keep solvent the Highway Trust Fund, the main source to fund federal projects. Much discussion during last year’s election cycle called for a need to improve our nation’s infrastructure. So far, neither party has produced a substantial proposal that led to serious discussion. In May, Reps. Sam Graves,R-Missouri and Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-District of Columbia, sent a letter to the House Ways and Means committee asking that any efforts regarding tax reform should also consider ways to address the highway trust fund with sustainable revenue sources.

This letter was co-signed by 253 bipartisan members of Congress — nine from Ohio, including Reps. Steve Stivers, R-Upper Arlington and Joyce Beatty, D-Jefferson Township. Unfortunately, neither the House nor Senate versions of tax reform addresses ways to fix the issues facing the Highway Trust Fund.

A ceremony was planned for Friday in Point Pleasant to commemorate the anniversary of the event and recognize the families of those who lost their lives 50 years ago. Federal and state elected officials from Ohio and West Virginia were expected to attend. The Federal Highway Administration and Ohio acted quickly to establish the NBIS. We now need elected officials at all levels to be proactive in providing increased and sustainable funding to fix and repair our roads and bridges so as to avoid another Silver Bridge tragedy.

James Pajk
Past president, Ohio Council
American Society of Civil Engineers


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Member Award

ASCE Central Ohio Section Younger Member Phillip Hinson is a General Engineer in the Engineering Service Division of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs at the Chalmers P. Wylie Veterans Affairs Ambulatory Care Center. Phil was recently awarded the Veterans Affairs Engineer of the Year award as part of the National Society of Professional Engineer's Federal Engineer of the Year program.

Phil was selected ahead of 1,200-1,300 other Veterans Affairs applicants. The program will recognize 29 engineers from various federal agencies from across the United States and abroad. Phil will be recognized at an awards ceremony held at the National Press Club in Washington D.C. in February.

Congratulations Phil!


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Save the Date

In the spring of 2018, the Ohio University ASCE Student Chapter will be hosting the 2018 Ohio Valley Student Conference (OVSC). The Chapter will be seeking sponsorships for the event as well as individuals interesting in volunteering as judges and for other opportunities. Additional information will be coming soon.


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New AccessEngineering Tools

AccessEngineering is an award-winning engineering reference tool for professionals, academics, and students that provides seamless access to the world's best-known, most-used collection of authoritative, regularly updated engineering reference information.  AccessEngineering also comprises dynamic online features, such as instructional, faculty made videos, calculators, interactive tables and charts, as well as personalization tools allowing users to organize crucial project information as they work.

Whether a working engineer, a faculty member looking for a means of teaching students how to solve real-world  engineering problems, or a student who needs to learn how to use the reference material they will use throughout their professional lives, AccessEngineering is essential to getting the right results, fast.

Get world-class, core engineering information delivered right to your desktop or device. Access is available after logging in via ASCE's website HERE or at


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Structures Congress 2018

Structures Congress 2018
April 19 -21, 2018
Fort Worth, Texas

Premier Event for Structural Engineers

Register Today

Reasons to Attend:

  • Learn valuable information in the technical sessions
    Earn up to 14 PDH’s
  • Attend the Evening Reception Celebrating the Future of SE hosted by CSI- make sure you purchase your additional ticket
  • Network with 1,200 of your colleagues
  • Students and Young Professionals, take this opportunity to meet top-level Structural Engineers and learn how to enhance your career. New Programs offered this year. 



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Ohio Infrastructure Report Card

The Ohio ASCE Council of Local Sections has identified a core group of volunteers to begin updating the Ohio Infrastructure Report Card, which was initially published in 2009. The goal is to release an updated report in December of 2018, just ahead of the mid-term elections in 2019. To capitalize on the timing of that release, the Ohio Council is seeking subject matter expert volunteers who would be willing to lead or assist in the development of each category to research, author, review, and edit the these sections.  Letter grades are established across 11 categories, not only indicating the current status but also summarizing the needs to bring each category to a respectable level. This report serves as an important publicity and advocacy tool to inform state and local legislators, as well as the public, on the historically poor condition of our infrastructure. In the 2009 version, Ohio's composite letter grade was a "C-". View the 2009 report HERE. If you are willing to volunteer your time and expertise to bring needed attention to our state's infrastructure needs, please contact Any level of commitment is appreciated.


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Reference Books

The Central Ohio Section bought a number of civil engineering reference books and donated them to the Columbus Main Library for public use. The titles are as follows:
-    Minimum Design Loads (7-10)
-    Design of Marine Facilities for Berthing, Mooring
-    FRP Composite Connections
-    Foundation Engineering Handbook
-    Trenchless Technology Piping
-    Civil Engineer's Handbook of Professional Practice
-    Building Code Requirements and Specification for Masonry Structures (5-11 & 6-11)
-    Urban Stormwater Controls
-    Municipal Wastewater Plants
-    Structural Steel Designer's Handbook
The books are for reference and can’t be checked out. They are located on the 3rd floor in a special collection area of the main library (north side of building in the half-height stacks).

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Meeting Schedule

Date Topic Group Location Coordinator
January 17, 2018
Ohio University Campus Meeting ASCE Athens, OH Patrick Karnes
February, 2018
Engineer's Week Lunch All TBD E-Week Committee
March 15, 2018
ASCE National President-Elect ASCE TBD Chris Nye
April 12, 2018
Jeremiah Morrow Bridge ASCE, ACI TBD Chris Nye
April 26, 2018
All Day
Spring Technical Seminar - Stormwater + OUPS ASCE TBD Patrick Karnes
May 24, 2018
Section Awards / Division of Sewerage and Drainage ASCE, WEF, AWWA TBD Firat Sever, Greg Barden
June, 2017
Planning Meeting All TBD Firat Sever
June 23, 2017
Day Event
21st Annual Golf Outing ASCE Darby Creek Golf Course Jim Pajk


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