2010: INFRASTRUCTURE AND RESILIENCE
The events of 2010 both demanded and rewarded resilience. To be sure, natural disasters from earthquakes to floods remind us all of
the vital role that modern infrastructure plays in our individual safety as well as our society’s ability to recover from these unplanned
but not unforeseeable events. And while the value of infrastructure’s defensive role must not be underestimated, it is the forward-
looking nature of today’s great works of infrastructure that is perhaps even more inspiring.
The more than 320 projects (an unprecedented number) nominated for the 2010 Be Inspired Awards and presented here in
The Year in Infrastructure 2010 are a virtual roadmap for resilience, showing a sustainable way forward, both economically and
environmentally. The resilience of the engineers and architects, constructors, and owner/operators, whose works are presented in
these pages, is on display—in projects big and small—tackling some of the great challenges of our time. They do it with concrete
and steel, rails and pipes, wood and composites, fashioned together with innovative technology, ingenuity, and a singular goal—to
improve the quality of life for people around the world.
Some of the projects are enormous in scale, involving thousands of team members, distributed in multiple locations, collaborating in
real time—like London’s Crossrail, a 150-kilometer rail link, with 21 kilometers of tunnels under the city. Others are more intimately
scaled, like the Hydrological Research Centre of Excellence in Namibia, with graceful sails designed to extract precious water
droplets from the desert fog. From the substation infrastructure of a new power grid in China to the reconstruction of a coal-fired
power plant to run on renewable biomass fuel in the southern United States, these projects represent the state-of-the-art in
sustainability. As important, they represent a new and better way of designing and delivering infrastructure.
To an unprecedented extent, the organizations and people behind the projects of The Year in Infrastructure 2010 are leveraging
information modeling to create truly integrated projects, which in turn deliver intelligent infrastructure. What is intelligent
infrastructure? It’s a bridge that is stronger and safer to build and a power plant that operates more efficiently without greenhouse
gas emissions. It’s also a new highway overpass that reduces travel time, improves safety, and relieves congestion, and a water
supply network that can anticipate peak demands and balance loads accordingly. Intelligent infrastructure is resilient infrastructure,
and The Year in Infrastructure 2010 is its showcase.