January, 2020

Top trends: 5 ways construction will evolve in 2020

Construction Dive

Though the nation's second-largest industry seems like it doesn't change much, there are myriad, nuanced forces shaping the way contractors do business and buildings get built, and more so now than ever before

Phase l Assessments for Tenants are the Hottest Environmental Issue in 2020

Green Building Law Update

The hottest environmental topic for business in 2020, as a result of an amendment to the Superfund law for the first time making clear that tenants can qualify as bona fide prospective purchasers, protected from cleanup costs from the presence of hazardous substances on a property, is prospective tenants are now ordering Phase l Environmental Site Assessments to take advantage of the liability protections in the new law. Buried in the more than 800 page Consolidated Appropriations Act signed on March 23, 2018 was Division N, the ‘‘Brownfields Utilization, Investment, and Local Development Act of 2018’’ (the BUILD Act). The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (CERCLA, commonly referred to as Superfund), 42 U.S.C. § 9601 et seq., provides an important liability protection, including from cleanup costs, for parties who qualify as bona fide prospective purchasers (BFPPs). The potential applicability of the BFPP protection to a tenant who leases contaminated or formerly contaminated real estate has been the subject of debate for the decades since the CERCLA’s enactment. The cases interpreting CERCLA make clear that the mere execution of a lease does not necessarily make a tenant liable as an owner or operator under the law. But courts have acknowledged uncertainty regarding the potential liability of tenants under CERCLA including because a tenant may be an operator of the property as well as a responsible person, but tenants had previously lacked any express protection in the Superfund laws. A prospective tenant may now to seek BFPP treatment in the event of a future federal CERCLA cleanup action at the leased property or simply to ensure appropriate environmental stewardship of the property. Such is a dramatically large issue with the economic contribution of real estate to the U.S. economy, when in any given year the vast majority of real estate transactions are leases and not contracts of sale. In 2020, an increasingly large number of prospective tenants, from commercial banks to sports apparel retailers and the defense industry are actively seeking protection for existing contamination before signing leases. In 2002, as part of the Small Business Liability Relief and Brownfields Revitalization Act, the BFPP definition was amended to include the parenthetical phrase “(or a tenant of a person)” in the description of who can claim the BFPP defense, but there was no other direction on the treatment of tenants. EPA then issued guidance in 2012 on the treatment of tenants as BFPPs, providing that a tenant could only derive it BFPP status through the property owner, and that status was limited to “so long as the owner maintains its BFPP status.” So while instructive, it provided little, if any, comfort to tenants. This 2018 BUILD Act addresses the uncertainty dating to 1980, by amending CERCLA § 101(40) including by in subclause (II), by inserting ‘‘, by a tenancy, by the instruments by which a leasehold interest in the facility is created,’’. And in that subsection, the term “bona fide prospective purchaser” has been amended to mean, (ii) a person who (I) who acquires a leasehold interest in the facility after January 11, 2002; (II) who establishes by a preponderance of the evidence that the leasehold interest is not designed to avoid liability under this Act by any person; and.”. Which has the macro effect of increasing the value of many commercial and industrial properties making reuse viable, obviating one of the longstanding criticisms of CERCLA, that the law limits urban redevelopment across America, and the micro effect of mitigating a tenant’s risk in an individual leasehold, by allowing a tenant to avoid CERCLA liability by any of the following three means: One, establishing the landlord is a BFPP because that landlord completed the “all appropriate inquiries” as required by federal law (including with a Phase I ESA); or two, establishing that the landlord completed all appropriate inquiries, but later failed either with compliance or to complete additional requirements; or three, establish the tenant itself, as the BFPP, by completing all appropriate inquiries prior to acquiring the leasehold interest and maintaining compliance with the additional requirements, if any. A tenant can now assert, without having to rely on the landlord’s status, the innocent landowner defense being protected from CERCLA liability including cleanup costs from the presence of a hazardous substances on the property. In this new decade when cursed energy is “out” and dark energy is “in” Phase I ESAs ordered by prospective tenants are in. As a pendent matter, when a Phase I ESA report exists, it may now as a result of the 2018 Build Act be material information, under state law, that a real estate broker is obligated to disclose to a prospective tenant. Concomitantly, should the Phase I ESA reveal a recognized environmental condition, a tenant could seek protection as a “inculpable person” not liable for existing contamination under state Brownfield laws. In 2020, prospective tenants in commercial and industrial properties are now ordering a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment. Environmental Federal ASTM E1527 CERCLA Phase I ESA Phase l Environmental Site Assessment Superfund

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Autoclaved Aereated Cement Blocks (AAC Blocks)- Manufacture, Properties, and Advantages

The Constructor

Autoclaved Aerated Concrete is an eco – friendly and certified green building material which is lightweight, load-bearing, high-insulating, durable. Building Building Materials Building Technology Guide

3 Construction Marketing Resolutions for 2020

Construction Marketing

2020: new year, new decade. January is the time that most people make resolutions to better themselves. What about you marketing resolutions for 2020? How could you improve your construction marketing in 2020 and beyond ?

You Can't Improve Construction Safety from Inside a Filing Cabinet

How mobile technology can mitigate risk, save money, and provide a competitive advantage.

How Cement is Made | Cement Ingredients | History of Cement 


How Cement is Made This Portland cement is a fundamental component of concrete. Concrete is produced when portland cement makes a paste with water that joint with rock and sand to harden.

More Trending

How To Find And Keep Top Construction Employees

Contractor Bookkeeping

We all know the usual process of finding new employees. Advertise a job, read resumes, conduct a telephone interview, conduct a face-to-face interview, then choose someone.

Tech 101: Construction drones

Construction Dive

Drones are becoming the go-to tool for mapping, inspecting and managing worksites more efficiently and safely. Would your projects benefit from an eye in the sky

The year’s major discovery: Your current customers are your most important marketing asset

Construction Marketing Ideas

This is one of the quietest New Years’ Eve celebrations — a sip of champagne with Vivian in our home with the TV tuned to Times Square. For me, of course, this is ideal. No crowds, but plenty of love.


Collaboration - Why It's Essential To Your Construction Company

Contractor Bookkeeping

Many elements are vital to a growing construction business. A financially-astute leader is one. A confident and motivated sales team well-versed in your construction company's service line is another.

2020 Construction Marketing Outlook- Survey Results

Construction Marketing

The Construction Marketing Association Chairman Neil Brown shared the results of a national survey on marketing plans and priorities for the new year. To better understand the marketing plans and priorities for 2020 we asked the following questions: Will you increase or decrease marketing in 2020?

Construction at the Movies!


Our Top 10 List of Movies Prominently Featuring Construction at Work or Construction Jobsites. More Tools

When Trees Sue for their Own Environmental Preservation

Green Building Law Update

In the new decade American environmental law will likely expand to include you being sued by the trees. I don’t mean being sued by the Lorax or someone else who “speaks for the trees” but rather the trees will have standing to sue to confront environmental degradation and the like.

The top construction projects to watch in 2020

Construction Dive

Construction Dive rounds up the six most newsworthy projects across the country that we are following closely this year

Cost Estimation of Construction Projects

The Constructor

Cost estimation of a project is the process of forecasting the probable cost for the due fulfillment of the project objectives, to the prescribed.

Business Facilities’ Editor: Texas Dominated The Decade

Business Facilities

Editor in Chief Jack Rogers tells News Radio 1080 KRLD that Texas' 2019 State of the Year win is a fitting coda for its dominance in economic development. Read: Business Facilities’ Editor: Texas Dominated The Decade at BusinessFacilities.com.

Texas 83

A Construction Contractor's Optimal Guide To Profiling Clients

Contractor Bookkeeping

Easily an essential first step in establishing your construction company is to define your clients so that you have the information you need to attract the right audience and generate valuable traffic to your website.

See Service Tech in Action at AHR


Visit Viewpoint at AHR 2020 in Orlando for an up-close look at our Service Tech mobile solution. Events

FERC Decision Puts State Renewable Portfolio Standards At Risk

Green Building Law Update

In the ongoing conflagration between “reliable power” and “clean energy” many may have missed when last month federal energy policy declared reliability the winner with renewable energy subsidies (e.g., state renewable portfolio standards) the loser.

Risk 130

Concrete firm charged for using staffing company to re-hire undocumented workers

Construction Dive

Speed Fab-Crete in Texas and the staffing agency are on the hook for felonies after they were found to be harboring some of the same workers ICE discovered during an earlier Form I-9 audit

Texas 91

Autoclaved Aerated Cement Blocks (AAC Blocks)-Properties and Advantages

The Constructor

Autoclaved Aerated Concrete is an eco-friendly and certified green building material which is lightweight, load-bearing, high-insulating, durable. Building Building Materials Building Technology Guide

Michigan’s Fiat Chrysler Expansion Is BF’s Deal Of The Year

Business Facilities

Michigan Economic Development Corp. has been awarded BF’s 2019 Deal of the Year Gold Award for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles' (FCA) expansion. Read: Michigan’s Fiat Chrysler Expansion Is BF’s Deal Of The Year at BusinessFacilities.com.

Amputations in Manufacturing – A New OSHA National Emphasis Program

FDR Safety

On December 10, 2019 OSHA published CPL 03-00-022 , National Emphasis Program on Amputations in Manufacturing Industries. This Instruction supersedes OSHA Instruction CPL 03-00-019, National Emphasis Program on Amputations that was published in August of 2015.

OSHA 100

Old School Turned New School: The Road to Progress.


Guarantee Electrical discusses moving to a modern construction solution. Client Spotlight

Top 10 Environmental Blog Posts for the Roaring ‘20s

Green Building Law Update

As we begin the new decade of the Roaring ‘20s we are incredibly excited about the prospects for environmental law. We are supremely confident that our business philosophy of “environmental risk as an opportunity” remains right for the times.

Survey ranks toughest construction jobs

Construction Dive

Roofing is perceived as the most physically demanding construction trade, while electrical work seems to be the most difficult to master, according to contractors and consumers responding to a recent CraftJack survey

Difference Between Red Bricks and Solid Concrete Blocks

The Constructor

Red bricks are one of the oldest and extensively used building material that is primarily made from clay. Solid concrete blocks are precast concrete. Building Materials Building Technology Guide Difference Between Red Bricks and Solid Concrete Blocks Red Bricks Solid Concrete Blocks

Bombardier To Build Global Manufacturing Center In Ontario

Business Facilities

The 1 million-square-foot facility in the City of Mississauga will have the capacity to build up to 100 aircraft a year and will support thousands of jobs. Read: Bombardier To Build Global Manufacturing Center In Ontario at BusinessFacilities.com.

Collaborative LEAN Construction Software

Job Order Contracting

4BT LEAN CONSTRUCTION COLLABORATION SaaS Solution. The innovate and exclusive Collaborative LEAN Construction Software for the Enterprise or Single Organization offering all of these features.

Viewpoint Earns Additional SOC Certifications


New SOC 1, Type II and SOC 2 and Type II certifications show data security commitment to clients. Viewpoint News

12 Numbers You Should Know to Hire Top Construction Talent

Construction Business Owner

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Autonomous security bot monitors construction jobsites with facial recognition technology

Construction Dive

A British firm has developed a two-wheeled robot that can recognize people and vehicles and whether they’re allowed to be on the site

Euler Theory of Column Buckling

The Constructor

Euler theory of column buckling is used to estimate the critical buckling load of column since the stress in the column remains elastic. The critical. Design Guide How To Guide Structural Engineering Column Design Loads on Structures Structures

Optimized Armor Investing $3.7M In South Carolina

Business Facilities

The armor steel supplier will establish new operations and create 100 jobs in York County, SC. Read: Optimized Armor Investing $3.7M In South Carolina at BusinessFacilities.com.