What’s Your Favorite US Project Of All Time?

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This topic contains 16 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  Bill Brantley 8 years, 11 months ago.

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  • #165476

    Josh Nankivel
    Participant

    Since we’ve just have Independence Day in the US, this might be fun.

    What’s the most awesome project in your view the US has ever undertaken?

    Or…

    What’s the most spectacularly failed project in US history?

  • #165508

    Bill Brantley
    Participant

    The Space Program from Mercury to the Curiosity Mars Rover. Just an amazing stream of projects from an amazing government agency. But, if I had to pick one project, the Apollo 11 Lunar Mission.

  • #165506

    Josh Nankivel
    Participant

    Very solid picks Bill!

  • #165504

    Josh Nankivel
    Participant

    I can’t pick CERN, but in recent memory anyway I think this is my favorite:

  • #165502

    Josh Nankivel
    Participant

    And I think that Mary Spaeth is one of my favorite Systems Engineers too!

  • #165500

    Josh Nankivel
    Participant

    How about the Hoover Dam? That’s back when megaprojects like that cost lives…the Hoover Dam construction involved 100 deaths! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hoover_Dam Talk about risk!

  • #165498

    Corey McCarren
    Participant

    I think this is pretty cool — Voyager Probe Reaches the Edge of the Solar System. I’m glad the Voyager still has about 12 years left to keep giving us information; it’s pretty amazing to think about, too, how long its power sources last.

  • #165496

    Peter Sperry
    Participant

    Most awsome project = Interstate Highway System. Positive impact on economy in terms of reduced shipping cost is incalculable. Opened up rural areas to development making suburbia possible (some of us actually like suburbia). Provided average people an ability to travel previously only available to the wealthy.

    Most spectacularly failed project in history = The ongoing war on drugs. Uncounted billions flushed away. Civil liberties trampled. Nearly 4 million convicts serving time. Few if any results, none worth the cost. Apparently we learned nothing from prohibition.

  • #165494

    Josh Nankivel
    Participant

    The farthest man-made object from earth, nice pick! http://spacephysics.ucr.edu/index.php?content=v25/v0.html

  • #165492

    Josh Nankivel
    Participant

    Excellent picks Peter, and I agree on both counts. 🙂

    I should read up on the history of the Interstate Highway System and it’s beginnings in particular.

  • #165490

    Chris Cairns
    Participant

    SBInet. Just kidding. My favorite is the Wounded Warrior Project.

  • #165488

    Peter Sperry
    Participant

    Just to add a little local flavor.

    Most awsome municipal project = Owens Valley to LA aquaduct. An early 20th century engineering marvel which paved the way for the growth of Southern California. Although admitadely devistating Owens Valley, the trade off in terms of opportunities created in the LA region was worth the cost and the project demonstrated what local governments could accomplish without federal assistance. With this project in LA, William Mulholland paved the way for Robert Moses in NY.

    Most spectacularly failed municipal project = The multitude of big box public housing projects built in every major city during the 60s and the 70s. A misguided attempt to provide cradle to grave social welfare became instead a method to warehouse four generations of low income families in a never ending cycle of dependency.

  • #165486

    Steve Ressler
    Keymaster

    Boston Dig ? 🙂

    Ezpass is one of my favorites. So is IRS e-filing

  • #165484

    Josh Nankivel
    Participant

    Great project Chris!

  • #165482

    Josh Nankivel
    Participant

    Thanks Peter!

  • #165480

    Josh Nankivel
    Participant

    Oh yes, definitely. I’ve been involved with a few projects in my career that were all about getting rid of paper and overhead to make things electronic and speed up the process. You can tell something is valuable when you imagine what it would be like to go back to how it was before the project. 🙂

  • #165478

    Earl Rice
    Participant

    Outstanding pick. What I thought of first. From the story I heard, General of the Army Eisenhower was tremendously impressed with the capabilities of the German autobahn (also their rail system) during WW2, and its ability to rapidly shift forces around. When he became President Eisenhower, he saw this as a must, not only for National Defense, but also for internal commerce and communication. When I was a kid, I saw the trip from nowhere Kansas to Philadelphia drop from 4 to 5 days, to 2 and half days. This doesn’t even mention the saved lives. I remember old Highway 50 was so narrow, that truckers could slap hands as they passed each other on this 2 lane road. And, they system had its test during Desert Shield and Storm. Remember all the Reserve and Guard military convoys headed to the major rail hubs for transport to the Person Gulf. The Interstate system proved itself to have been one of the wisest moves that our Government has done. Though there have been other great feats, this is one that we see, and probably use, every day.

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