Editor's Log

Headlining this issue of Underground Construction is our industry-exclusive horizontal directional drilling survey (published online on June 17). This marks 15 years of research into the amazing HDD market that has evolved at an incredible rate, evolving from a utility and pipeline construction novelty to a necessity in a relatively short period of time.

Robert Carpenter, Editor

Accepting responsibility for our mistakes is something that never comes easy for individuals. So it is no surprise that often it is even harder for large organizations or corporations to also own up to their mistakes and react in a responsible manner.

Robert Carpenter, Editor

As an industry, we talk a lot these days about the importance and value of damage prevention. Safety is included in the conversation. Accidental deaths in the construction industry, particularly the underground segment, have fallen sharply over the past decade.

I’ve been asked by many people if the main section of the Keystone XL Pipeline, from Canada to Oklahoma, will be built now that a revised route has been approved both by the state of Nebraska and TransCanada. The new route reportedly will avoid the most ecologically sensitive regions of Nebraska.

It was a desperate cry for help, presented in powerful and disturbing comments from municipal respondents to the recently completed 16th Annual Sewer & Water Infrastructure Survey conducted by Underground Construction.

Robert Carpenter, Editor

The November elections are over and the nation has survived. But the question remains: when will the much ballyhooed economic recovery begin in earnest? It looks like 2013 is going to be another interesting and challenging year in which the underground infrastructure market must endeavor to persevere. And we will.

As I write this column, it has been about two weeks since the presidential election. In conversations with many industry people, the topic is always what lies ahead for the next four years and can we still transition into a reasonably healthy business environment?

By the time this magazine is read, the national elections will be over and our course cast for the next four years for president, two years for House and Senate.

It wasn’t that long ago that those involved in the fiber communications realm were considered dreamers. Shortly after the fiber back-bone build-out bust of 2000-2001, fiber trunk lines were everywhere but rarely utilized. The U.S. was awash in dark fiber systems, waiting for not just business, but individuals as well, to embrace fiber to the premises – at a high cost. Most consider that cost to connect fiber to homes and business as just too high and the return too low to make a working business model. It would take decades for fiber to become in vogue enough to justify lighting up the dark fiber, justify build-out costs and truly provide fiber to the premise.

Robert Carpenter, Editor

In this issue of Underground Construction, there are several project stories that all feature radically different equipment technologies or applications. Some have been around for many decades, others just a short period.

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