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COVID-19 & AEC Update: April 24, 2020

dbia update

DBIA’s mission is to provide the best resources available to help inform and empower our industry. In these uncertain times, that mission is even more important. As our communities fight the Coronavirus, we are working to find the best information available to help design-build teams navigate the unknown. This daily newsletter will provide the latest COVID-19 news for the AEC community.

Design-builders deliver in times of crisis and we will again.

If you have COVID-19 news impacting the AEC industry from your organization, state or community please email us.

April 24th


‘I don’t need this right now’: States may have coronavirus reopening plans, but Americans are still wary-USA Today. There was a unified plan that ‘we’ve all been in this together,’  staying 6 feet apart, wearing masks and being good neighbors. But governors in a variety of states announcing an imminent re-opening of select businesses has made many Americans nervous it will upend the common goal of flattening the viral curve.

Coronavirus spread ‘under the radar’ in US major cities since January, researchers say-CNN. The novel coronavirus silently spread in the United States earlier than previously thought, infecting tens of thousands of people in New York and other major cities, researchers say. A new model shows the first infections came from China in early or mid-January, and that the virus went undetected because many people were not presenting symptoms.

Coronavirus Cases Are Still Growing In Many U.S. States-FiveThirtyEight. While the situation in many states is improving, in nearly half of all states in the United States, there are as many COVID-19 cases as ever, and in some cases, even more. Newly diagnosed cases, the positive test rate and the number of deaths are all showing progress in some states — but getting worse in plenty of others.


State DOTs Expedite Millions in Construction, With Highways Empty-But threat of funding shortages looms over future projects-ENR. Taking advantage of substantially reduced work-zone traffic volumes from COVID-19 stay-at-home orders, many state departments of transportation are accelerating road and bridge projects already underway or scheduled for 2020.


Georgia is reopening hair salons, gyms and bowling alleys despite a rise in coronavirus deaths statewide-CNN. Undeterred by a barrage of criticism, Georgia state officials moved ahead Friday with plans to allow some nonessential businesses to reopen, even as coronavirus deaths increase statewide. Gov. Brian Kemp was one of the last state leaders to issue a stay-at-home order, effective April 3, to combat the spread of COVID-19.

New York

Coronavirus Could Upend New York-New Jersey Infrastructure Projects-Wall Street Journal. The coronavirus pandemic is threatening billions of dollars earmarked for New York City’s airports and other major infrastructure projects. The executive director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, said Thursday that without federal assistance the agency may significantly scale back its 10-year, $37 billion spending plans.


Construction in Pa. can begin before state reopens, Wolf says-PennLive. Gov. Tom Wolf announced that construction that was previously deemed non-essential can begin on May 1, even though his phased plan to start lifting parts and eventually all of the statewide stay-at-home order won’t begin until at least May 8.


Transportation department faces staggering losses while Washington traffic idles during coronavirus-King 5 News Seattle. The Washington State Department of Transportation is losing up to $100 million per month with fewer cars on the road during Washington’s coronavirus outbreak.


Construction Workers Are Grateful for Jobs but Fearful for Their Health-Wall Street Journal. Coronavirus breeds a patchwork of safety rules for the industry, leaving workers on edge; ‘It’s about necessity’ for those making the decisions on what to do.

Construction industry has a 3-prong plan to restart-Seattle Daily Journal of Commerce. A construction advisory group developed a three-phase plan to safely resume construction statewide and has now sent its initial recommendation to Gov. Jay Inslee. The first projects to resume could include “low-risk” commercial, residential and road building jobs that were already started.

AIA index points to major downturn in commercial construction-Construction Dive. Demand for design services from architecture firms recorded its largest-ever monthly decrease in March. The index reported that billings declined across all regions of the country and all firm specializations.​

Contact our editors if you have COVID-19 news impacting the AEC industry to share.