After a delay of more than seven months, a two-year, $34.6-billion Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization finally has made it to the Senate floor. For construction, the bill’s key item is the $8.1 billion it would provide for Airport Improvement Program (AIP) grants, which finance runway work and other infrastructure projects. Of the bill’s $8.1 billion, $4 billion would be for 2010 and $4.1 billion would be for 2011. Funds would be subject to annual appropriations. This year’s AIP appropriation is $3.5 billion. If the Senate passes the bill, the next step would be a conference with the House, which approved
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.