Panamanian firm Constructora Urbana SA (CUSA) won the first dry-excavation contract in July 2007 with a low bid of $41.1 million for the Pacific locks access channel, but was outbid for the two subsequent jobs. However, CUSA offered its services to the winning firms and netted subcontracting jobs with both. “We have the equipment out there already, and we can pretty much keep doing what we have been doing,” says CUSA Executive Vice President Carlos Fábrega. “We keep our equipment operating and our people at work.” Photo: C.J. Schexnayder/ENR Non-canal expansion construction thrives in Panama. Related Links: Panama Widens Horizons
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.