Construction of a $1.4-billion, 11-kilometer light-rail line connecting Vancouver, B.C., to other provincial cities is set to start in early 2011, even though Translink, the municipal transportation authority, cannot yet fund its share of the project. British Columbia Prime Minister Gordon Campbell says the line, which has portions at grade, elevated and below ground, will move forward despite uncertainties on funding its final $400 million. The project also is sponsored by provincial and federal governments.
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.