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COVID-19 & AEC Update: May 7, 2020

aec 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.

May 7th


Small-Business Lending Program Gets Poor Marks From Voters-Morning Consult. A plurality of voters, including 36 percent of Republicans, said the funds have been distributed unfairly.

U.S. Coronavirus Testing Still Falls Short. How’s Your State Doing?-NPR. To safely phase out social distancing measures, the U.S. needs more diagnostic testing for the coronavirus, experts say. But how much more? The U.S. could soon have enough capacity to conduct double the current amount of testing. But will that be enough, and what should the benchmark for states be?

Coronavirus Live Updates: 3.2 Million More Claim Unemployment Benefits in the U.S.-New York Times. In many states, more than 25 percent of workers are unemployed. Governors have been encouraged to relax social-distancing rules, even though most states do not meet the guidelines because documented cases are still growing.



Boston Contractors, Unions Cautiously Prepare For Construction’s Return-BisNow. As the country gets set to enter its third month of coronavirus-related restrictions, local builders are preparing for what will happen when they are allowed to return to the sites they shut down in March. Contractors plan on using a variety of high-tech strategies. These strategies include apps and PPE that includes face masks and, for close work, face shields.

New Jersey

Murphy extends N.J. coronavirus public-health emergency for 30 days. State of emergency remains in effect.-NJ.com. Gov. Phil Murphy announced Wednesday he’s extending the public-health emergency he declared in New Jersey over the coronavirus pandemic by 30 days. Murphy declared both a state of emergency and a public health emergency on March 9 as the pandemic was beginning to spread in New Jersey. He extended that order about a month later on April 7.

New York

Majority of new COVID-19 hospitalizations in New York are people who stayed at home-MarketWatch. The vast majority of New Yorkers still walking into hospitals with COVID-19 have been sheltering at home and avoiding mass transit. Very few were even traveling on foot or in their own cars on a daily basis and yet, 66% of those surveyed from 100 hospitals around the state were at home before entering the hospital.


Many construction workers testing positive for coronavirus, Austin health officials say-Austin American-Statesmen. Construction workers in Travis County have emerged as a top group among people infected by the coronavirus. Other groups include health care and grocery store employees who have worked throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Austin-Travis County Health Authority City Council members that health officials have seen numerous clusters of cases involving such workers.


Treasury Extends PPP Repayment Deadline, but Eligibility Confusion Persists-Engineering News-Record. The Treasury Department is extending a deadline for recipients of Paycheck Protection Provision (PPP) loans. They will have one more week to return the money to the government if the companies determine they do not meet newly revised guidelines for eligibility. But if the Treasury fails to revise and clarify the guidance for the highly popular, forgivable loans, construction firms that received the loans might pay back the loans and lay off workers.

AECOM posts record $42B backlog amid COVID-19 crisis-Construction Dive. While the company experienced COVID-19-related disruptions during the second quarter, most of its projects worldwide have been deemed essential. In a note that could be an indicator for others in the industry, work-related to the pandemic could also help boost the AECOM’s outlook even more in the near future.

Survey: Workloads Decline Amid Virus Outbreak-Engineering News-Record. Total workloads fell to a net balance of -12% in the first quarter of this year, according to a Q1 RICS/AACE US Construction and Infrastructure Survey. The drop follows a net balance of +45% reported in the fourth quarter of 2019.

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