story1 Dakota Access allowed to bore under tribal sites
Work on the Bakken crude oil pipeline under northwestern Iowa tribal lands can go ahead - just so it doesn't disturb the surface - under an amendment to the Dakota Access pipeline's Sovereign Lands construction permit granted last week by the DNR, reports Prairie Business. Instead of digging a trench through the Big Sioux River Wildlife Management Area in Lyon County, workers will use special boring equipment to route the pipeline 85 feet below ground.

The Iowa Utilities Board recently voted to permit Dakota Access to begin construction in areas where permission has already been approved, but Native American and environmental groups are still fighting the project, and note that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has not issued permits for the pipeline to cross wetlands, streams and other waters in Iowa.
AffluentstoryIllinois commits to Chicago-QC rail project  

Under threat of losing $177 million in federal money, cash-strapped Illinois notified the U.S. Department of Transportation it will move ahead with plans to begin passenger rail service from Chicago to the Quad Cities within a few years, reports Crain's Chicago Business. U.S. Rep Cheri Bustos, D-East Moline, and the Midwest High Speed Rail Association had been warning the nearly eight-year-old grant could vanish without action by June 30, the end of the federal fiscal year.

Gov. Bruce Rauner included an item to begin preliminary engineering in his stopgap budget - but getting a budget passed in Illinois these days is far from guaranteed, let alone scraping together the required $45 million for the state's match. The Quad City Times reports Moline has invested $4.6 million in city funds to leverage other state and federal funds for construction of a multi-modal station that would include a private hotel. 
Story3UI simulator could help make ATVs safer
The University of Iowa's College of Engineering and the UI Children's Hospital unveiled a virtual-reality simulator this week that could enable researchers and designers to take some of the risk out of riding ATVs. The engineering school's Center for Computer-Aided Design rigged a special driver jumpsuit with a VR headset, 17 motion sensors and a four-wheeler mounted on a movable platform that simulates terrain changes.

The aim is to identify factors contributing to loss of control, said Charles Jennissen, a professor of pediatrics and emergency medicine and member of the UI ATV Safety Task Force. ATV-related accidents kill about 800 people nationally each year and injure another 450,000. Iowa averages 200 ATV-related emergency room visits and 10 deaths per year. About a third of those involve children.
Story2Hy-Vee bringing fashion style to its aisles
Hy-Vee is not simply a grocer, but is fast becoming a fast-casual restaurateur and a fast-fashion retailer, reports the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal. The West Des Moines-based company's new Lakeville store in the Twin Cities includes a 3,300-square-foot F&F clothing boutique, a franchise partnership with a fashion retailer owned by U.K. grocery giant Tesco. It's all part of Hy-Vee's evolution into what CEO Randy Edeker calls "a lifestyle company."

F&F sells apparel for men, women and children. Prices range from $8-$50 and merchandise is changed out every eight weeks because customers visit the stores frequently on grocery shopping trips. Hy-Vee expects to add the boutiques to six stores this year, including two in the Des Moines area, reports the Des Moines Register.
Story5Live bulls, riders at Walmart: Match that, Amazon

Speaking of changing retail, Walmart has teamed with the Professional Bull Riders league to bring the rodeo pros and their bucking bovines to 40 of its stores this year as part of a "retail-tainment" strategy aimed at fighting off digital competition, reports Fortune. Pilot events in Sioux Falls, Little Rock and Las Vegas this year allowed shoppers to meet riders and peek at the bulls  - confined in semi-trailers.

The promotion went so well Walmart wants to try it in 200 stores next year. "Just as the world becomes more digital, a lot of our customers are craving a more physical, real experience," said Walmart's top marketing officer, Tony Rogers. He may be on to something. Walmart's store traffic has increased for the past year-and-a-half, reversing the down trend of the previous eight quarters, reports Market Realist. 
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