May 13, 2021 from 12:00 PM–1:30 PM

Make it Smarter

Permitting, Designing, and Delivering Better Infrastructure

Hosted by United for Infrastructure

Much of the current discourse around infrastructure is focused on the overall package size and pay-fors, while critical issues around how to squeeze the most value out of every federal dollar have moved to the back burner. This event seeks to refocus policymakers’ and the public’s attention on the innovations in permitting, design, and project delivery that will ensure that America gets the infrastructure it needs on time, on budget, and built to last.


Introduction: Patrick Sabol, Co-Founder and Deputy Director, United for Infrastructure

Keynote Conversation
This framing conversation will cover how congress and the administration can accelerate the construction of economically essential infrastructure projects through smarter permitting, better project delivery, and other regulatory reforms.

  • The Honorable Shelley Moore Capito, Senator, West Virginia
  • Interviewer: Martin Durbin, SVP for Policy and President, of the Global Energy Institute, U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Panel Conversation: Smarter Permitting
The focus of this session will be on permitting reforms that speed or streamline the NEPA process, without sacrificing overarching environmental and equity concerns.

  • Carlos Swonke, Director of Environmental Affairs, TxDOT
  • Brian W. Boose, Senior Vice President, Technical Practice Director – Impact Assessment and Permitting and National US Federal Environmental Planning Leader, AECOM
  • Gary Guzy, Senior of Counsel, Covington and Burling

Project Spotlight: Using Data to Develop Better Projects
In this spotlight video, we will highlight how artificial intelligence and big data can drive better project selection and delivery.

  • John Porcari, U.S. President, Axilion Smart Mobility

Panel Conversation: Smarter Design
This panel is focused on innovations in project design that save time, money, and create better infrastructure outcomes for all Americans.

  • Sidharth Haksar, Senior Director and Head of Construction Strategy, Autodesk
  • Carlos Braceras, Executive Director, Utah Department of Transportation
  • Moderator: Rob Puentes, CEO, Eno Center for Transportation

Fireside Chat: Smarter Project Delivery
Organized labor isn’t just about good paying jobs, it’s about delivering the highest quality infrastructure built to the highest standards. This fireside chat will cover all the ways that union labor drives better project delivery, leads to higher building standards, and the innovative approaches unionized workers use every day on job sites across America.

  • Terry O’Sullivan, General President, Laborers’ International Union of North America
  • Zach Schafer, Co-Founder and Executive Director, United for Infrastructure

Closing: Zach Schafer, Co-Founder and Executive Director, United for Infrastructure