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How to Reshape Our Country's Surface Transportation Financing Outlook

How to Reshape Our Country's Surface Transportation Financing Outlook

Construction Equipment Guide
WED MARCH 25, 2020 - NORTHEAST EDITION #7
LUCY PERRY – CEG CORRESPONDENT

With the COVID-19 health crisis front and center, many people in the heavy construction industry see a U.S. Congressional stimulus package as a means of funding the nation's roads and bridges. Efforts to bolster an economy buckled by the coronavirus, as well an uptick in non-traditional funding partnerships, present opportunities to reshape our country's surface transportation financing picture.

The American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) reports that highway and bridge contractors added 16,800 workers in January, the sixth consecutive year of first-month job gains. Employment in this sector is now 301,400. While all major construction sectors saw their workforces expand in January, highway, street and bridge construction had the strongest employment growth, rising by nearly 6 percent compared with last year. The nominal value of highway and bridge construction work was $4.88 billion, up 4.7 percent from January 2019, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Total transportation construction was up 4.1 percent.

Giving a 2020 economic forecast last fall, ARTBA Chief Economist Alison Premo Black predicted investments in road and highway infrastructure would grow by at least 5 percent this year, after increasing 8 percent from 2019.

"The real market growth for 2020 is being fueled by increased transportation investments from federal, state and local governments," she said. "The growth we saw in 2019 is continuing and I think that reflects the new money from states going into the pipeline for transportation construction." FULL ARTICLE

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