Highway and Infrastructure
Transportation and infrastructure construction remain healthier construction sectors.

“The largest movement we will see is in infrastructure work,” Lambeck says. He cited work on the 2nd Avenue and 7th Avenue subways, and various tunnel work, such as East Side Access and the Access to the Region’s Core (ARC) Mass Transit Tunnel. In addition, stimulus funds will help infrastructure projects.

Cobelli expects few totally new projects, but he says, some organizations have projects on the drawing boards that will move forward.

“Some existing programs will have more work coming out than they did in 2009,” Cobelli says. “The stimulus money helped these existing programs. Without stimulus money, some of these programs may have been delayed.”

Stallmer says some projects remain to be let from the $1.1 billion in stimulus dollars the state received, and there are several state-funded projects expected to start by March 31, 2010, when the current 2005-2010 New York State Department of Transportation capital program expires.

“The beginning of 2010 could be promising as a result of the stimulus and the remainder of the core program from the state,” says Stallmer, who expects about $1 billion to be awarded for 2010 spring and summer projects.

However, unless more funds are made available, Stallmer anticipates less activity in the second half of 2010, with layoffs occurring as jobs wrap up and new ones are not funded.

“The end of 2010 and beginning of 2011 could be incredibly bleak,” Stallmer says. 

NYSDOT presented a $25.8 billion, multimodal, five-year capital program proposal to Gov. David A. Paterson in October. Twelve billion dollars is set aside for highway construction. The department has pegged 2010-2011 spending on all components of the plan at $3.9 billion.

Robert A. Briant Jr., chief executive officer of the Utility & Transportation Contractors Association in Allenwood, N.J., anticipates a better year for his members. He expects the New Jersey Turnpike Authority to let $1.5 billion in projects in 2010, compared to a typical year with $300 million in new jobs. A toll increase generated the funds that enabled the additional work.

“Things are better,” Briant says.

The New Jersey Department of Transportation has awarded all of its stimulus dollars, Briant adds, but counties and municipalities still have about $169 million to award. He also expects the $8.7 million ARC Mass Transit Tunnel will generate work. The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and its partner, NJ Transit, anticipate completion in 2017. The tunnel will allow trains from New Jersey to enter Pennsylvania Station.

Barnard of New Jersey and Judlau Contracting, Joint Venture, a partnership between Barnard Construction Co. of Pompton Plains, N.J., and Judlau Contracting of College Point, N.Y., is the apparent low bidder for the first ARC-related $583 million Manhattan project.