public works

plural noun

: works (such as schools, highways, docks) constructed for public use or enjoyment especially when financed and owned by the government

Examples of public works in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web County officials said a public works crew had turned up earlier in the morning and removed the remains before anyone else arrived. Jon Schuppe, NBC News, 14 Nov. 2023 The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 127, AFSCME for short, was formed in September 2022 to represent public works employees, City Manager Lydia Romero said via email. Lauren J. Mapp, San Diego Union-Tribune, 10 Nov. 2023 As the department’s chief operating officer for eight years Mr. Downey played a role in initiatives such as reforms to Amtrak and the drafting of the Transportation Equity Act of 1998, the most expensive public works legislation ever passed by Congress. Sam Roberts, New York Times, 7 Nov. 2023 Torres’s 2017 conviction stemmed from a plan to have city public works employees do renovations, carpentry and electrical work at a warehouse that Torres’s daughter and nephew planned to turn into a liquor store, according to Daniel Wu, Washington Post, 28 Sep. 2023 Highlights include live demonstrations, a fire extinguisher demo, Police K-9 and Sidewalk CPR along with a display of police, fire and public works vehicles. Linda McIntosh, San Diego Union-Tribune, 7 Oct. 2023 Cryptosporidium is a microorganism which can cause gastrointestinal problems, including diarrhea, vomiting, fever, and stomach pain, according to a public works press release. Sara Smart, CNN, 30 Sep. 2023 Highlights include fire extinguisher, police K-9 and sidewalk CPR demonstrations, along with a display of police, fire and public works vehicles. Linda McIntosh, San Diego Union-Tribune, 15 Sep. 2023 Shaker planners continue to look for more grants to further reduce the local cost, now sitting at just over $8 million for the overall $26 million public works infrastructure portion of the project. Thomas Jewell, cleveland, 12 Sep. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'public works.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1600, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of public works was in 1600

Dictionary Entries Near public works

Cite this Entry

“Public works.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition

public works

noun plural
: works (as schools, highways, or docks) constructed with public funds for public use

More from Merriam-Webster on public works

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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