It is important to keep friends, but not too many, for a man of many companions may come to ruin. I socialise with a group of civil engineering friends every so often. Whilst it was known amongst us that two of our Black (Coloured and Indian included) friends had opted out of civil engineering to join the banking and insurance sectors, I was sad to learn that a third one had left the fold to join a well-known brewery. It is sad because all three young men were aspirant civil engineers at university, and possessed excellent attributes for the makings of good civil engineers.
The design of the Thorntree View Integrated Development, a massive and ambitious human settlement between Tshwane's Rosslyn and Soshanguve communities, provides a balance between the traditional concept of providing shelter and the need for economic growth and social and ecological development in the community.
The continuing debate on what the ratio of engineers to technicians should be, strongly suggests that our industry needs technicians. Yet, when students search for experiential training opportunities, it would seem that the ratio should be 1:0! Not a day goes by without me receiving a desperate e-mail or call from one or more National Diploma students looking for that one year in industry that is required to complete their qualification.
The November 2010 edition of our magazine was the second attempt at presenting the formidable network of engineering bodies that SAICE liaises with on behalf of its members. Again the response from our readers was so encouraging that we decided to continue publishing an updated version every year in November. For this year we have updated the information where necessary, and where possible, and retained the list of all the tertiary institutions in South Africa where civil engineering can be studied (this list proved very popular with our readers last year).
The engineering profession approached government in the 1960s to request legislation to regulate the profession. The result was that the South African Council for Professional Engineers (SACPE) was established in 1969.
Networking with discipline-specific bodies is like ventilating a room - fresh ideas, shared concerns, and mutual appreciation all make for more comfortable and informed living within our professional space. In this article we concentrate on a number of discipline-specific bodies that SAICE liaises with, including some of the discipline-specific voluntary associations that were listed on page 14.
Th e history of SAICE's international involvement is worth repeating briefly.
The Institution's networking on an international level took off in 1994 during the ASCE (American Society of Civil Engineers) convention in Atlanta when a SAICE delegation was invited to attend the annual ASCE International Round Table. During that visit SAICE's President and Executive Director at the time, Brian Bruce and Dawie Botha respectively, not only had the opportunity to network with engineering institutions from across the world, but for the first time ever they met African colleagues.
The Bloemfontein Airport Interchange project was initiated by the Free State Department of Police, Roads and Transport in conjunction with the South African National Roads Agency Limited (SANRAL) in November 2007. The project, described as the 'Gateway to Bloemfontein', was approved by government as part of South Africa's initiative to present to the world its readiness and worthiness of hosting the 2010 World Cup Soccer event.
The Markgraaff Pedestrian Bridge in Bloemfontein is visible confirmation that steel can be used to create a unique and innovative structure that is functional and aesthetically pleasing, despite a limited budget. Combining technical expertise and creative thinking, the project team constructed a slender steel bridge of individual character, which displays standard sections, and complements its surrounding environment.
The S4 class of 2011, enrolled for a National Diploma in Civil Engineering at the University of Johannesburg, embarked on a research project in the 'Structural Steel and Timber Design III' module to compare the theoretically calculated tensile resistance to the experimentally tested values of a tension member connected to an end plate.
Waste management in South Africa is currently undergoing a major shift following the release of the new Waste Management and Classification Regulations earlier this year. Th is new approach to waste classification was developed in response to the increasing challenges associated with managing the changing waste landscape in South Africa, and to address the shortcomings of previous waste management legislation which favoured landfill, co-disposal and dispersion of waste. Th is is particularly evident as the incidences of contamination of soil and water by hazardous waste are increasing.
After five successful years of supporting Gauteng municipalities, SAICE's outreach arm, SAICE Professional Development and Projects (SAICE-PDP), will move towards supporting government in the professionalising of municipalities.
Many SAICE members may wonder how new standards originate and who is responsible for writing SABS standards. The purpose of this note is to provide some insight into the standards writing and approval process, and to discuss some recent developments on the standards front.