• Government building boom to hit $300 billion for 2008.Construction spending by federal, state, and local governments has reached record levels, despite a collapse in home building. Governments are on track to spend a record $300 billion this year on schools, roads, bridges, and other projects, the Census Bureau reports. That’s a 7% increase on top of a 12.4% jump last year, the biggest increase since 1993.
• WTC building report reveals a tale of two fires.A recently released federal report may have solved the mystery of the World Trade Center 7, which fell hours after the Twin Towers on 9/11. The report, based on a three-year investigation by the National Institute of Standards & Technology, concludes that smoldering debris from one of the fallen towers ignited flames at WTC 7, and the intense heat—not explosives—caused the skyscraper to crumble.