Campus: CSU Chico -- November 10, 2004
Construction Management Faculty Awarded $1.3 Million Caltrans
Denny Gier, professional engineer and a professor in the Department of
Construction Management, College of Engineering, Computer Science and Technology,
was recently awarded a $1.3 million, three-year research project from Caltrans to
study the effects of noise from highway construction and operation on sensitive
Gier will serve as co-principal investigator on the project along with David
Dubbink, Ph.D. from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo. Other principal team members
collaborating on the project include Anne Bowles, Ph. D., of Hubbs-SeaWorld Research
Institute, Robert Kull of Parsons Engineering, Frances Villablanca, Ph. D., of Cal
Poly and Lisa Schweitzer, Ph.D., of Virginia Tech.
The project will study the effect of noise generated by highway construction and
operation on certain species of sensitive birds. The results of the study will help
Caltrans develop noise mitigation strategies, sample contract provisions, and
policy regarding noise generation during highway construction and subsequent
Gier will create a "Virtual Highway Construction Site" and a "Virtual Highway" via
computer and sound generation software that can be transported to the field to
simulate highway noise near bird nesting areas that are not currently near highways.
This highway noise simulation and 3D noise modeling work will be the first of its
kind in the nation. Other scientists and biologists on the team will study the
impact of this noise on the birds and their nesting habits.
Gier, new to Chico's Construction Management Department this fall, coming most
recently from Cal Poly's Construction Management Department, brings this Caltrans
Research Project to CSU, Chico. Gier said, "This research project is an excellent
opportunity to demonstrate that Chico is all about applied research. I'm grateful
for the opportunity to be working on this project at CSU, Chico. The department
and the college have been very encouraging and supportive of my research efforts."
Ken Derucher, dean of the College of Engineering, Computer Science and Technology,
said, "We are happy to welcome Denny and this Caltrans project to Chico's College
of Engineering, Computer Science and Technology. This particular research project
fits nicely with the wide variety of environmental research projects already being
done at CSU, Chico. Our creative, hard-working faculty, staff and students will
play a major part in developing innovative solutions to the many environmental
challenges facing California. We look forward to the success of this research
project and its contributions to the college as a "world class" center for applied
research in the years to come."
Other recent grants to the College of Engineering, Computer Science and Technology's
Environmental Program include a collaborative grant between the newly formed Butte
County Resource Conservation District, the Big Chico Creek Watershed Alliance and
the Little Chico Creek Watershed Conservancy; an award from the Sierra Nevada
Alliance to the ECT Environmental Program and the Big Chico Creek Ecological
Reserve, in collaboration with the Big Chico Creek Watershed Alliance; and a grant
from the Resource Legacy Fund for the completion of the Big Chico Creek Watershed
For more information, phone Gier at 530-898-4008 or e-mail him.
Contact: Kathleen McPartland, 530-898-4260
Denny Gier, Construction Management, 530-898-4008,