High-speed rail is red-hot. The U.S. Dept. of Transportation has been flooded with proposals seeking a piece of the $8 billion it received for high-speed rail grants in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. However, the potential plans far outstrip DOT’s ARRA rail bank account. DOT’s Federal Rail-road Administration reported on July 16 it had received 278 rail-grant “pre-applications” totaling $102.5 billion. Some applicants may not win grants, but more money may be on the way. A House committee has recommended an additional $4 billion for high-speed rail in regular 2010 appropriations. Photo: California high speed rail authority California’s $40-billion
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.