Highways and bridges are major winners under House Democrats’ economic stimulus proposal, garnering $30 billion, the largest sum for any single public-works sector in the $825-billion package. If the $30 billion holds through further congressional action, it would represent about a 75% bonus on top of the $41-billion federal highway obligation ceiling for all of 2008. John Horsley, American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials’ executive director, says, “We of course have the capability to do more [than $30 billion], but that’s a very healthy boost to highway investment and we’re very pleased.” Related Links: Proposal in House Fires
The market is generally healthy and steadily growing, and margins are up for large specialty contractors. Further, advances in design tools and owner demand for collaboration are giving subcontractors a seat at the table early on in projects.