In Brief

Nonresidential construction shrugged off the turmoil in homebuilding and credit markets in July to post another solid gain, according to Ken Simonson, chief economist for The Associated General Contractors of America. Simonson was commenting on the Sept. 4 construction spending report from the Census Bureau. Although total construction spending slipped 0.4% in July, seasonally adjusted, and residential

Nonresidential construction shrugged off the turmoil in homebuilding and credit markets in July to post another solid gain, according to Ken Simonson, chief economist for The Associated General Contractors of America. Simonson was commenting on the Sept. 4 construction spending report from the Census Bureau. Although total construction spending slipped 0.4% in July, seasonally adjusted, and residential fell 1.4%, nonresidential spending climbed 0.6%, the 10th consecutive monthly gain. For the first seven months of 2007 combined, total construction was down 3.4% and residential plummeted 18% compared to the same period in 2006. Those figures obscure the 15% jump in nonresidential spending.

St. Louis-based mechanical contracting firm Haberberger, Inc., has announced that it has completed phase one of an approximate $1.6 million project at Associated Electric Cooperative Inc.’s New Madrid Power Plant. Haberberger was hired to remove and replace actuators on the turbine control valves in Units 1 and 2 at the plant. The project, which is expected to be finished in early November, involves demolishing the existing turbine control tubing in each unit and removing and replacing the actuators on the turbine control valves. Two hydraulic pumps will also be installed, and stainless steel tubing will be added from the pumps to the individual actuators.

ASHRAE is developing a codeintended baseline sustainability standard for health care facilities. Proposed Standard 189.2, Design, Construction and Operation of High-Performance Green Health Care Facilities, will prescribe the procedures, methods and documentation requirements related to high performance green health care facilities. “ASHRAE has long understood the unique qualities that define the health care facility,” said Rick Hermans, a member of ASHRAE’s technical committee related to health care design.

Over the next four years, Simpson Strong-Tie will donate $1 million in cash and products to help support Habitat For Humanity’s projects across North America and its national programs, such as the Gulf Coastrecovery program and the Jimmy Carter Work Project. Simpson’s agreement also includes employee volunteer time to help building Habitat homes. Habitat for Humanity International is a nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating poverty housing around the world. Since 1976, Habitat has built more than 225,000 houses worldwide, providing simple and affordable shelter for more than 1 million people