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The Hoover Dam Bypass: A Modern Engineering Marvel

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The Hoover Dam Bypass is being described as a remarkable, magnificent, impressive, spectacular, and monumental engineering feat. Completed in October 2010, this $240 million civil engineering project took nearly a decade of intensive planning and preparation, required coordinated efforts among a six-agency management consortium, and consisted of a three-prong emphasis on design, safety, and economic considerations.

Green Homes vs Traditional Homes

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In recent years, the U.S. home building industry has undoubtedly seen its troubles. The downturn in the economy has forced many builders to rethink how they approach their market now that it is much smaller. In many cases those builders have chosen to address the increasing demand for green homes. By offering green homes, many builders are now meeting their customers’ needs for energy- and water-efficient homes with a healthier environment and financial benefits. What once was a niche can now be seen as mainstream. According to the United States Green Building Council, their LEED for Homes program has certified 10,000 homes since it started in 2008. This sounds very impressive, but what is a green home, and what are the benefits compared to a traditional home?

Strait of Messina Bridge: Construction Will Begin on the World’s Largest Suspension Bridge

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After centuries of consideration, a bridge to connect Sicily and the Italian peninsula is scheduled to begin construction in December.

For hundreds of years residents of mainland Italy and the island of Sicily have discussed the idea of a bridge that would connect the two bodies of land by spanning the Strait of Messina. However, because of the two-mile width of the strait, its depth, its current, and the fact that it frequently experiences tremors and earthquakes, a bridge seemed to be out of the question. Because of these issues, a ferry system was developed and used instead. Still, the idea of a bridge that could support both cars and trains seemed ideal for commuters.

Decking 101

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Decking 101 is our quick guide to popular deck materials (like wood, composite and cellular PVC, and aluminum), installation, cost, and maintenance tips.

Build Your Own Man Cave for $8 per Square Foot

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With money tight and the economy sputtering along, you may be looking for affordable ways to add a man cave to your home. Finishing your basement is the least expensive way to get the space you need without breaking the bank. As a professional builder, I have learned several key measures that will keep down the cost of your new man cave while still keeping the cool factor. Let's explore some of these cost-saving secrets to help you get the best new space at the most affordable price.

How To Install Door Casing

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Install new casement trim around your front door to increase energy efficiency and to amp up curb appeal. Here's how.

Now that you’ve installed a new front door, your home radiates curb appeal. We have one more project to complete the new look – door casing. With the right tools and a little know-how, installing door casing is a job any DIYer can accomplish. Join our host, Jeff Wilson, for a quick lesson on how to install simple casement trim around a new front door.

Marina Bay Sands SkyPark: An Iconic Singapore Destination

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A rooftop observation deck spans three hotel towers and creates a dramatic element in the Singapore skyline.

The SkyPark is an architectural masterpiece that rests atop the three 55-story hotel towers of the Marina Bay Sands mixed-use resort in Singapore. Recognized as one of the world’s largest public cantilevers, the SkyPark defies gravity as it extends 213' beyond the towers and boasts incredible panoramic views of the Singapore skyline, the South China Sea, and Marina Bay.

Insulated Siding, Part 1

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Installing insulated siding on an older home may be the best way to up its R-value.

My first encounter with insulated siding (or IS as it’s known in the trades) came while visiting the Raritan Inn, a bed-and-breakfast in New Jersey that was remodeled by a pioneer in energy-efficient and innovative "green" construction, Bill Asdal. The Raritan Inn serves as a research center and a showpiece of deep-energy remodeling. In 2003, Asdal, in partnership with the Department of Energy (DOE) and the National Association of Homebuilders (NAHB) Research Center, pioneered the first net-zero energy remodeling project in the United States. The structure was clad with insulated siding in an effort to achieve the highest R-values possible within the limits of remodeling an 18th century structure. What I noticed was not the R-value but the aesthetic quality. The siding had a clapboard profile and it lay flat, lacking the usual telling concave cup of most vinyl siding.

How to Install a GFCI Outlet

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What kind of electrical receptacle should you install in the kitchen or bath? The answer is a GFCI outlet, or a ground fault circuit interrupt outlet. A GFCI (or GFI) outlet should be installed in any place where electricity might come in contact with water; such as a kitchen, a bathroom, a laundry room, garage, or exterior space. Basically, a GFCI outlet will sense when electricity is going to pass through a person’s body and it will shut off before the shock is delivered. Installing this type of outlet is only slightly more complex than installing a standard three-pronged receptacle. Join the At Home channel’s host, Jeff Wilson, for a tutorial on how to install a GFCI electrical outlet.

Case Study: Zaha Hadid Architects’ Riverside Museum of Transport and Travel, Part 2

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Second in a five-part series on Glasgow’s Riverside Museum, this article examines the building's structural engineering. International engineering firm Buro Happold provided structural engineering services. Follow Buildipedia throughout the month of March to read in-depth coverage of the Riverside Museum's various design and engineering systems.

Zaha Hadid is known for designing buildings with far-out forms. The recently completed Riverside Museum in Glasgow, Scotland, lives up to this reputation, featuring a zig-zagging profile in plan and section. Although seeming to defy gravity with its column-free spans, the building conceals some savvy structural maneuvers beneath its sleek skin of zinc. Engineering giant Buro Happold was the wizard behind the curtain.

Pritzker Prize Worthy: SANAA's Glass Pavilion at the Toledo Museum of Art

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By now you have probably heard that Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa, partners of the Japanese architectural firm SANAA, have been awarded the 2010 Pritzker Architecture Prize. Renowned for their elegant compositions that emphasize transparency and lightness through explorations in material minimalism, Sejima and Nishizawa have emerged with an impressive body of work that includes the Toledo Museum of Art Glass Pavilion. Inspired by the news of the Pritzker award, I scheduled a trip to see the Glass Pavilion so that I could experience the qualities of design that prompted such an honor.

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