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From the September Issue

Buffalo is Showing its True Colors

Here’s a comeback story with numbers to back it up.

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From the May Issue


IAMC Insider

Fresh off a successful IAMC Forum in Detroit this week, the Industrial Asset Management Council here presents the final letter from outgoing Chair Scott Cameron, and we gain insights into supply chain issues from the leaders at BNSF, Dubai Ports World and Werner Enterprises who just spoke in Detroit on “Supply Chain Fatigue.”

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DoDEA students respond to questions better than most, according to the latest assessment data.
Photo courtesy of DoDEA

The National Institutes of Health this week reported that a study of nearly 2,000 children “found that those who reported playing video games for three hours per day or more performed better on cognitive skills tests involving impulse control and working memory compared to children who had never played video games.” The finding comes in the same week that the National Assessment of Educational Progress reported record lows in math and reading scores. Among 26 urban school districts, only one — Los Angeles — showed an increase in average scores for eighth-grade reading. “At eighth grade, reading scores declined in 33 states and jurisdictions, did not change in 18, and rose in one (the Department of Defense Education Activity),” said the NAEP.

What is the DoD Education Activity? The home page for the organization (DoDEA) informs us the DoDEA operates 160 schools in eight Districts located in 11 foreign countries, seven states, and two territories across 10 time zones. “There are nearly 900,000 military-connected children of all ages worldwide, of which more than 66,000 are enrolled in DoDEA schools and served by more than 8,000 educators.” In a release complete with full breakdowns of student test data, Undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness Gilbert Cisneros said, “DoDEA leaders focused on equity of access and continuity of instruction during the early stages of the pandemic with a rapid transition to remote learning, then worked to create conditions that enabled students to start returning to classrooms by the beginning of School Year 20-21. Their work, coupled with strong partnership from military commands and parents, directly supported military readiness by allowing service members with students in DoDEA schools to remain focused on their military missions.” DoDEA Director Thomas M. Brady added, “The dedication and hard work of our teachers and administrators, along with the implementation of a rigorous College and Career Ready Standards, sustained the impressive performance by DoDEA students on the 2019 NAEP despite the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

As it happens, the DoDEA’s Pacific region this week launched its first-ever varsity esports league across its 12 high schools, sparked in part by pilot programs at four schools that were launched during the pandemic. “Esports is an inclusive activity that appeals to many of our students,” said DoDEA Pacific Chief of Staff Todd Schlitz, “It might not look like a traditional sport, but it requires many of the same skills. It takes practice, strategy, communication, problem-solving, critical thinking, and teamwork. Plus, there are opportunities for college scholarships and careers in eSports.”

For more on the topic, revisit Site Selection’s recent series on esports competition and video game development as industry sectors in their own right, not to mention drivers of real estate activity. — Adam Bruns




Shining a Bright Light on Illinois Solar Expansion

Stoked in part by the Climate and Equitable Jobs Act (CEJA), solar installations are on the upswing across the state, which now ranks second in the Midwest for solar output.

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Chart courtesy of ATRI

Screening for safety factors for your expanding logistics facility network? The Atlanta-based American Transportation Research Institute has released the 2022 update to its Predicting Truck Crash Involvement research. Based on a predictive model that identifies statistically significant relationships between truck driver safety behaviors and future crash probability, the new report is based on more than 580,000 individual truck driver records. “ATRI’s analysis identified more than 25 different violations and convictions that increased the likelihood of future crashes, five of which increased future crash likelihood by over 100%,” ATRI reports. “Simply having a previous crash increased a truck driver’s probability of having a future crash by 113%, 28.4% higher than previous ATRI Crash Predictor reports. Five behaviors have consistently been strong indicators of future crash involvement across three or more reports, including a Reckless Driving violation, Failure to Use / Improper Signal conviction, a prior crash, Failure to Yield Right-of-Way violation, and an Improper or Erratic Lane Changes conviction.” Above are the Top 10 states for truck safety, ranked by the relationship between traffic enforcement inspections and crashes.




Bangkok-based chemical company Indorama Ventures Public Company Limited (IVL this month announced the official opening of its PETValue bottle-to-bottle recycling plant in the Philippines, in partnership with Coca-Cola Beverages Philippines—the bottling arm of Coca-Cola in the country. “PETValue Philippines, located in General Trias in Cavite Province south of Manila, is the country’s first food-grade, bottle-to-bottle recycling facility, and the largest in the Philippines,” IVL stated, noting it was part of Coca-Cola’s “World Without Waste” program aiming to collect and recycle the equivalent of every bottle it sells by 2030. IVL will recycle about 2 billion additional used PET (polyethylene terephthalate) plastic bottles in the Philippines every year and create about 200 new local jobs. The plant will wash and shred post-consumer bottles into flakes to produce recycled PET resin that is suitable for use in food-contact applications. IVL is investing $1.5 billion globally to expand recycling facilities and sustainable production, including a new ambition to reach post-consumer PET bale input of 1.5 million tons per year by 2030.

“By the end of this year we will have increased our recycling capacity to more than 375,000 tons,” said Yash Lohia, chairman of ESG Council at IVL. “In 2021, we acquired a PET recycling plant in Texas and announced plans to build a new facility in Indonesia. In 2020, we signed a joint venture agreement with Coca-Cola to build a state-of-the-art recycling plant in the Philippines, which culminated in today’s announcement. In the same year, we also acquired recycling plants in Brazil and two in Poland. This is to be celebrated given the challenging pandemic environment. These seven plants will join a family of existing recycling sites in Alabama, Ireland, two in France and the Netherlands.”

Source: Conway Projects Report


Digital media tech company spokenote, LLC, this month announced a new headquarters location in the Certified Technology Park in Fishers, Indiana. The company, which launched its first product in June, will graduate from space in the Indiana IoT Lab to a 4,000-sq.-ft. office located at the Techway building currently being redeveloped by Fishers-based Rebar Development. The company plans to grow its team to 300 by the end of 2026. The Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) has committed to an investment in spokenote of up to $7 million in the form of performance-based tax credit incentives and up to $165,000 in training grants. The City of Fishers has also pledged $55,000 in training grants to assist in the skilling up of spokenote employees. “Additionally, spokenote is utilizing the state's Venture Capital Investment (VCI) tax credit program,” a release said, “which helps entrepreneurs and startups attract capital more quickly by giving investors an additional incentive to invest in early-stage, growing Indiana companies.” “John Wechsler and his spokenote team have built an incredible product platform as they join the growing list of companies that have graduated from Launch Fishers,” said Fishers Mayor Scott Fadness of the company’s founder and CEO.

Source: Conway Projects Report



Photo by Pictorial News Co. courtesy of Library of Congress
Click image to enlarge

Nearly five full days after the final out of the league championship series, the World Series finally gets underway tomorrow in Houston. You can have a lot of fun scouring the Library of Congress archives for World Series photos. I found this image made at the final game of the 1905 World Series as the American League’s Philadelphia Athletics squared off against the National League’s New York Giants at the Polo Grounds in New York City, where horse carriages and newfangled automobiles lined the field’s outskirts. The Giants won the Series 3-1 behind three full nine-inning shutout wins pitched in a span of six days by Christy Mathewson, who used his unhittable screwball to record 18 strikeouts in those three games. (The Giants’ lone loss in the Series was also a shutout.) Inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1936, Mathewson, who bore a striking resemblance to Marlon Brando in his prime, was saluted as the standard by which greatness is measured. “He could pitch into a tin cup,” said Hall of Fame second baseman Johnny Evers. He won 37 games in 1908, and once won at least 30 games three years in a row, including the 1905 season. — Adam Bruns