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January/February 2014 Transportation Builder Magazine


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2014 January/February Issue of "Transportation Builder" magazine

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January/February 2014 Transportation Builder Magazine

  1. 1. Jan.-Feb. 2014 TransportationBuilder 1 builder® Jan.-Feb. 2014
  2. 2. Jan.-Feb. 20142 TransportationBuilder THE STRENGTH OF FOUR CORE BRANDS Wirtgen America 6030 Dana Way · Antioch TN 37013 Telephone: 615-501-0600 · Fax: 615-501-0691 In all areas of the road construction business, the WIRTGEN GROUP stands out through innovative solutions, recognized processes and a full range of modern products meeting the highest demands. It is these characteristics which have made the WIRTGEN GROUP the market leader for mobile road construction equipment. ROAD AND MINERAL TECHNOLOGIES
  3. 3. Jan.-Feb. 2014 TransportationBuilder 3 JANFEB 2014 VOL. 26, NO.1 contents The official publication of the American Road & Transportation Builders Association FEATURES COLUMNS Chairman’s Message President’s DeskVision 2014: Infrastructure at a Crossroads MAP-21: Road to Reauthorization HNTB Celebrates 100th Anniversary Call for Future Industry Leaders: 2014 ARTBAYoung Executive Development Program Transportation Construction: The Next Endangered Species? Market Challenges Continue, ARTBA Quarterly Survey Finds 6 15 12 24 10 27 28 8 TransportationBuilder 3 15 ON THE COVER If It’s New, It’s Here: CONEXPO-CON/AGG 201418 24 100 Years
  4. 4. Jan.-Feb. 20144 TransportationBuilder Staff PUBLISHER T. Peter Ruane DEPUTY PUBLISHER Matt Jeanneret EDITORIAL DIRECTOR Beth McGinn PUBLICATIONS EDITOR & GRAPHIC DESIGNER Jenny Ragone CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Dave Bauer ARTBA senior vice president, government relations Michael DeLacey Microdesk president Rich Jefferson AEM senior director of public relations Robert J. Slimp, PE HNTB Infrastructure CEO Darwyyn Deyo ARTBA research manager Nick Goldstein ARTBA vice president of environmental & regulatory affairs Sara Jones ARTBA communications & marketing program manager Transportation Builder® (TB) is the official publication of the American Road &Transportation Builders Association, a federation whose primary goal is to aggressively grow and protect transportation infrastructure investment to meet the public and business demand for safe and efficient travel. In support of this mission, ARTBA also provides programs and services designed to give its members a global competitive edge. As the only national publication specifically geared toward transportation development professionals,TB represents the primary source of business, legislative and regulatory news critical to the success and future of the transportation construction industry. Transportation Builder® (ISSN 1043-4054) is published bi-monthly by the American Road &Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA). Postmaster: Send change of address toTransportation Builder®, c/o ARTBA,The ARTBA Building, 1219 28th Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20007.Telephone: 202-289-4434, Fax: 202-289-4435, Internet:; E-mail: Periodicals postage paid at Washing- ton, D.C., and additional mailing offices. Subscriptions are $105/year for ARTBA members, which is included in the dues; $120/year for non-members; and $200/ year non-U.S. mailing addresses. Copyright ©2014 ARTBA. All rights reserved. Material may not be repro- duced in any form without written permission from the publisher. Reg. U.S. Patent &Trademark Office. Visit us: builder® Executive Committee Chairman: Doug Black J3L, LLC, Atlanta, Ga. Senior Vice Chairman: Nick Ivanoff Ammann & Whitney, NewYork, N.Y. First Vice Chairman: David S. Zachry Zachry Construction Corporation, San Antonio,Texas Northeastern RegionVice Chairman: John Kulka HRI, Inc., State College, Pa. Southern Region Vice Chairman:Tom Elmore Eutaw Construction Company, Aberdeen, Miss. Central Region Vice Chairman: Kathi Holst Roadway Construction & Maintenance Services, Warrenville, Ill. Western Region Vice Chairman: Steve McGough HCSS, Sugar Land,Texas Vice Chairman At-Large:Ward Nye Martin Marietta Materials, Inc., Raleigh, N.C. Vice Chairman At-Large: Scott L. Cassels Kiewit Infrastructure Group, Inc., Kiewit Corporation, Omaha, Neb. Vice Chairman At-Large: MelissaTooley TexasTransportation Institute atTexas A&M University College Station,Texas Vice Chairman At-Large: Bob Alger The Lane Construction Corporation, Cheshire, Conn. Vice Chairman At-Large: John Houle 3MTraffic Safety & Security Division, St. Paul, Minn. Vice Chairman At-Large: Mike Donnino Granite Construction Company, Lewisville,Texas Treasurer:Tom Hill Summit Materials, LLC, Denver, Colo. Secretary: Pete Ruane ARTBA, Washington, D.C. ARTBA-TDF Board ofTrustees Chairman: Leo Vecellio, Jr. Vecellio Group, Inc., West Palm Beach, Fla. Contractors Division President: Pete Getchell PKF-Mark III, Inc., Newtown Pa. Contractors Division First Vice President: Jeff Clyde W.W. Clyde & Co., Springville, Utah Research & Education Division President: Dr. R. Clark Graves KentuckyTransportation Center, Lexington, Ky. AEM Representative: Ron DeFeo TEREX Corporation, Westport, Conn. Materials & Services Division President: Mike Flowers American Bridge Company, Corapolis, Pa. Planning & Design Division President: Matthew Cummings AECOM, Philadelphia, Pa. Public-Private Partnerships Division President: Thomas Stoner H.W. Lochner, Inc.,Tampa, Fla. Transportation Safety Industry Division President: Sue Reiss Impact Recovery Systems, San Antonio,Texas Transportation Officials Division President: Eric Seibring Piatt County, Ill. Assn. of County Enginners, Monticello, Ill. Council of State Executives: Pat Goss WIsconsinTransportation Builders Association, Madison, Wis. Immediate Past ARTBA Chairman: Steve Wright Wright Brothers Construction, Co, Inc., Charleston,Tenn. Past Chairman’s Council Chairman: Jim Madara Gannett Fleming, Allentown, Pa. Young Executive Leadership Council Chairman: David Harwood Terracon, Olathe, Kan. Joint Committee Representative: Dave Gehr Parsons Brinckerhoff, Herndon, Va.
  5. 5. Jan.-Feb. 2014 TransportationBuilder 5 editor’s note Jenny Ragone, Publications Editor & Graphic Designer Every three years, more than 125,000 construction professionals from across the globe descend on Las Vegas for CONEXPO-CON/AGG, a week-long conference and exhibition that showcases the latest products, equipment and services in the construction and mining industries. Hosted by the Association of Equipment Manufacturers, the event can best described in one word—massive! Our cover story on page 18 previews what visitors can expect for the March 4-8 show. Of course, the biggest challenge facing our industry this year is the future of the federal HighwayTrust Fund (HTF) and the reauthorization of MAP-21. With this issue, we begin a year-long series “Road to Reauthorization,” with the first installment written by ARTBA Senior Vice President of Government Relations Dave Bauer. It’s on page 12. Dave does an excellent job of providing context about the key political and policy issues. ARTBA will be using CONEXPO to educate attendees about the HTF situation, and urge them to contact their members of Congress with a simple message: “Fix the HighwayTrust Fund.” If you want to learn more about how you can get involved and make a difference, please be sure to visit ARTBA’s CONEXPO booth at L-20049. Finally, on page 24, ARTBA member-firm HNTB celebrates 100 years in business. If your company or organization is celebrating a major anniversary or milestone, we want to hear about it. Email me: We hope you enjoy reading this issue of “TB.” See you at CONEXPO! INDUSTRY LEADING CONSTRUCTION SOFTWARE THAT INTEGRATES WITH YOUR ACCOUNTING SYSTEM.THAT INTEGRATES WITH YOUR ACCOUNTING SYSTEM. instant Cloud Hosting Mobile Apps Estimating Job Costing Dispatching Fuel Tracking Safety GPS Equipment Maintenance So uth H all #645 28 No rth Hall #119 56 STAY CONNECTED WITH ARTBA Facebook: American Road & Transportation Builders Association Twitter: @artba YouTube: LinkedIn:
  6. 6. Jan.-Feb. 20146 TransportationBuilder from the chairman Doug Black President, J3L, LLC 2014 ARTBA Chairman The “80/20 rule” is a common rule of thumb in business that we, as an industry, should embrace. Also known as the “Pareto principle” or “the law of a vital few,” it states that 80 percent of the results in any situation are determined by 20 percent of the actions. In business, the rule is used to focus resources and to determine which operating areas should receive the most attention. But the principal can be applied to any situation—focus on what matters most and leverage those key drivers to “get the biggest bang for your buck.” If we apply this concept to our industry’s national policy shaping efforts, it’s clear that the key factor in producing positive results out of Washington has always been partici- pation from industry members. Given the serious federal funding challenges facing the transportation construction market in 2014 and beyond, participation in your national association has never been more important. You already know that the Highway Trust Fund (HTF) will be in a crisis situation later this year. State construction programs are beginning to feel the effects of the uncertainty. U.S. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx January 15 warned that the HTF “will start bouncing checks as soon as August.” And with the reauthorization of MAP-21 also due this fall, it’s clear the stakes for our industry have never been higher. There are three areas where your partici- pation can help make a difference. One of the most important is the annual ARTBA Federal Issues Program (FIP) and Trans- portation Construction Coalition (TCC) Fly-in. This is your chance to meet with your elected officials in Washington and tell them how federal policies and funding levels are impacting your business, and the jobs and livelihoods of their constituents. Our congressional representatives know they must do something to address the long-term fiscal integrity of the trust fund and return certainty to our market, but they will only act if they feel pressure from voters like us. So, I would encourage you to come to Washington June 9-11, and be prepared to deliver your message directly—and force- fully—to your representatives and senators. Another program that yields results for our industry is the ARTBA Young Executive Development Program (YEDP), which is held each year in conjunction with the FIP and TCC Fly-in. First launched in 1995, and now with more than 500 graduates, the YEDP is an intensive, four-day introduction to the federal legislative and regulatory processes. The program helps develop the next generation of industry leaders who will shape future transportation policy. YEDP not only prepares our future leaders, but also brings their energy and ideas to our current initiatives—a double win! In addition to visits with members of Congress on Capitol Hill, the YEDP features a session with industry firm CEOs who share their career experiences and offer perspective on a variety of business issues. During the last two years, I’ve had the unique privilege of speaking to the YEDP fellows about leadership, goal setting and the importance of hard work. In response, I received a lot of thoughtful questions and was truly impressed by the intellectual fire power in the room. I encourage you to nominate one of your firm’s “rising stars” to participate in this unique program. I can Member Participation Yields Results promise that it will be money and time well invested. Finally, another key area where your involvement is needed is through the financial support of ARTBA’s award- winning, “Transportation Makes America Work” (TMAW) program. TMAW is a comprehensive public affairs effort that fo- cuses exclusively on protecting the highway and transit markets by building political support for increased investment. It operates like a political campaign using coalition development, advocacy issue advertising, social and digital media, videos and publications, public opinion research, economic research and analysis, media outreach and special events. TMAW is already ramping up its grassroots communication and lobbying activities to help move the political needle. You’ll see several examples of it in the coming weeks, including at CONEXPO in Las Vegas, and with the launch of a new TMAW website in March. Also under the TMAW umbrella, ARTBA will unveil in February the “Transportation Investment Advocacy Center” (TIAC)— a first-of-its kind, dynamic education program and internet-based information resource designed to help private citizens, legislators, organizations and businesses successfully grow transportation infrastructure investment at the state and local levels. With more than half of funding for transportation projects coming from state and local governments, it’s vital we give all our allies across the nation access to information that can help them mount successful transportation investment campaigns. You’ll be able to access TIAC at Through the FIP, YEDP, TMAW and TIAC, ARTBA aims to provide valuable resources and services that will help grow and protect the transportation construction market for the future. But the success of these efforts depends on that 20 percent—us! Our strength lies in numbers. With participation and financial support from ARTBA members, the industry can and will be successful in achieving its policy objectives.
  7. 7. Jan.-Feb. 2014 TransportationBuilder 7
  8. 8. Jan.-Feb. 20148 TransportationBuilder T. Peter Ruane President & CEO ARTBA president’s desk As I write this column on January 31, I’ve been flabbergasted, to say the least, at what took place during the first three weeks of the year. Several groups purporting to represent certain transportation industry sectors and no less than three widely- read construction trade publications have sent up smoke signals that the battle over one of the most significant threats facing the U.S. transportation design and construction market in decades is already finished. What’s even more alarming to me is that the “white flag waving” came before we even have had a serious fight. Specifically, I am referring to the reauthorization of MAP-21 and the crisis facing the federal Highway Trust Fund (HTF)—the source, on average, of 52 percent of all state highway and bridge capital investments. Unless Congress and the President act by October 1, the HTF will not be able to support any new projects in fiscal year 2015. Such an outcome could devastate the American economy, jeopardize hundreds of thousands of jobs, and throttle market development activities for many ARTBA and non-ARTBA member firms. At least nine states already are warning of adverse impacts on their construction programs if the uncertainty drags on. One construction publication didn’t even mention MAP-21 or the HTF in its wish list of top construction business issues for 2014, and it called for shifting the focus away from Washington, because it viewed the chance of consensus as low. Another publication opinion piece slammed the politicians in Washington, and said the only way to go was to toll everything. While ARTBA certainly supports tolling as part of the solution, it is not the panacea, and the political hurdles to establishing national tolling are arguably even higher than other new revenue options. It’s easy to bemoan Washington political and policy gridlock, and to argue that nothing will get done. But, it’s the wrong message to be sending to transportation design and construction professionals whose livelihoods depend, in large part, on what happens on Capitol Hill. The fact is that when it comes to infrastructure policy issues, there is common ground to be ploughed. How quickly we have forgotten that MAP-21 passed the House of Representatives 373-52 and the Senate 74-19—the same legislation many naysayers said would never get done. How many other bills garner such overwhelming support these days? Federal highway and transit investment will be more than $50 billion in fiscal year 2014. It speaks to the importance of the federal government role in transportation policy and also explains why shifting focus out of Washington would be unwise for at least two more reasons. First, the nearby chart shows that from 2008-2013, state and local highway and bridge spending dropped cumulatively about $18 billion from pre-recession levels. By contrast, over the same period, federal investment, thanks in part to the 2009 stimulus law, increased by nearly $17 billion and helped keep the market afloat. Second, over 40 percent of the $11 trillion in domestic truck freight shipments in 2011 were sent out of state, according to Federal Highway The Battle Over the Highway Trust Fund is Just Beginning
  9. 9. Jan.-Feb. 2014 TransportationBuilder 9 Administration data. Over 23 percent of that total was sent to non-neighboring states, which is more evidence of a national transportation network’s importance to moving products and supplies critical to economic growth. This network cannot be built and sustained through a patchwork of state programs. Given these realities, now is the time for every industry professional concerned about the future of their business to get ready to fight over the next few months. Take your message directly to Washington. Call your representative and senators via ARTBA’s Action Hotline (888-448-2782) today and tell them to do their bloody jobs by fixing the Highway Trust Fund and completing action on MAP-21’s reauthorization as soon as possible. Download the “Transportation Construction Advocate” app from the iTunes or Google Play stores to access the information you need to connect with your elected officials. And plan to be in Washington June 9-11 for the ARTBA Federal Issues Program and Transportation Construction Coalition Fly-In. The work ahead will not be easy, but it never is when it’s truly worth fighting for. When it comes to the imminent battle over the Highway Trust Fund and our industry’s future, surrender is not an option!
  10. 10. Jan.-Feb. 201410 TransportationBuilder For the first time this year, fellows will have an opportunity to attend a mentoring dinner with past YEDP graduates. The dinner will provide an opportunity to connect with past graduates and discuss their upcoming meeting with their congressmen. If you know a rising industry star, nominate them today for the YEDP! Admission is a competitive process. To be considered for admission to the YEDP, candidates must be nominated by a sponsor and submit a completed application form. Candidates should have at least three years of experience in the transportation design and construction industry, have made a significant contribution to the work of his or her firm, and shown evidence of strong leadership potential for the industry. Nominees should be under 40 years of age, though exceptions may be made on a case-by-case basis. Applications are due Monday, March 31. To obtain a copy of the application form, visit For any questions, contact me at, or 202.289.4434. ARTBA is looking for a few good men and women to come to the Nation’s Capital this spring for the 19th annual Young Executive Development Program (YEDP). The YEDP is a one-of-a-kind program that provides an intensive overview of the federal legislative & regulatory processes, and empowers young executives to assume leadership roles that will help shape the trajectory of transportation policy for the 21st century. More than 500 graduates from 200 companies, state contractor groups and public agencies have completed the pro- gram. The curriculum features sessions on highway and transit financing, safety and economics, environmental issues, innovation and public-private partnerships. YEDP fellows also hear from industry CEOs who share their career experiences and offer their perspective on leadership and business issues. YEDP participants are trained on how to become effective grassroots advocates and shown the powerful force they can be on Capitol Hill. They also meet with their congressional delegations about pending transportation issues during “Hill Day,” which occurs in conjunction with the ARTBA Federal Issues Program and Transportation Construction Coalition Fly-in. 2014 ARTBA Young Executive Development Program: Nominate Your Firm’s Future Leaders The 2013 YEDP class tours the FHWA Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center. by Sara Jones Sara Jones is ARTBA communications & marketing program manager:
  11. 11. Jan.-Feb. 2014 TransportationBuilder 11 W AR A DS Nomination Forms: Globe Recognizes U.S. transportation construction industry excelllence in environmental protection & mitigation. DEADLINE: APRIL 18 PRIDE Honors excellence in community relations and public education that enhance the image of the U.S. transportation construction industry. DEADLINE: APRIL 29 Hall of Fame Celebrates individuals or families from the public and private sectors who have made extraordinary contributions to the U.S. transportation development. DEADLINE: JUNE 13 Women Leaders Honors the extraordinary efforts of individuals, companies and public agencies that have demonstrated leadership and dedication to innovation and the promotion of women leaders within the U.S. transportation construction industry. DEADLINE: JULY 11 TransOvation™ Recognizes innovations that make our transportation network the best it can be in serving those who pay for it, use it and rely upon it. DEADLINE: AUGUST 29 Project Management Academy (PMA) | APRIL 7-9 The PMA will deliver both substantive theory and practical application of project management principles for road and bridge building construction project managers. The academy will cover the latest innovations in seven core subjects: construction documentation, resource management, planning and scheduling, economics of safety, industry ethics, client relations, and management and leadership. Location: ARTBA Headquarters, Washington, D.C. Registration: Members: $1,999; Non-Members: $2,499 P6 Scheduling Academy | APRIL 9-11 Provides in-depth instruction on Primavera Project Planner (P6®) software and other “tricks of the trade” to efficiently track key aspects of transportation projects, such as people, materials, operational benchmarks and payment schedules. The academy will be led by acclaimed construction management expert Dr. Jay Newitt of Brigham Young University. Location: ARTBA Headquarters, Washington, D.C. | Registration: Members: $1,700; Non-Members: $1,999 Project Delivery Academy | OCTOBER 15-17 This two-and-a-half day, interactive professional development academy will help you learn the fundamentals of Design-Build (DB) and Construction Manager-General Contractor (CMGC) delivery methods in four core areas: Procurement models/contract structure; Project pricing provision models; Developing responsive submittals to requests for qualifications (RFQ) and/or requests for proposals (RFP); and Post-award contract administration. Location: ARTBA Headquarters, Washington, D.C. | Registration: Members: $1,999; Non-Members: $2,500 2014 Awards & Professional Development Programs Registration for both the PMA and P6: Members: $2,699; Non-Members: $3,199
  12. 12. Jan.-Feb. 201412 TransportationBuilder Mapping a Road to Reauthorization by Dave Bauer The first in a series The 2012 surface transportation law, “Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century” (MAP-21), expires in less than eight months. While the primary House and Senate committees of jurisdiction have launched aggressive reauthorization efforts of hearings and other outreach activities, the fundamental reality remains that the timing, duration, and size of the next surface transportation authorization bill is directly contingent on how Congress addresses the Highway Trust Fund’s (HTF) repeated revenue shortfalls. It’s all about the Highway Trust Fund All public-access roads and bridges in the U.S. are owned and operated by state and local governments. Since 1916, however, the federal government has shared the cost of building and preserving major roads. Between 1956 and 2008, the HTF was the source of all federal investment in highways—and, since 1982, most federal investment in public transportation. The HTF supports these investments with revenues collected from the federal motor fuels tax and other highway user fees. During that time, there was no burden on the general fund and no impact on the federal deficit. Beginning in 2008, existing revenues flowing into the trust fund were unable on their own to preserve investment commitments from the 2005 surface transportation law, SAFETEA-LU. In 2008, 2009 and 2010, Congress approved separate measures to supplement trust fund revenues with general funds—the cumulative amount of these transfers ($35 billion) was equivalent to past resources diverted from or denied to the trust fund. The need for general fund transfers in FY 2008-10 was not due to a collapse of HTF revenues, but to lower revenues than projected in the SAFETEA-LU measure. Revenue forecasts at that time assumed travel would continue to grow as rapidly as in the recent past, and SAFETEA-LU’s investment levels were set to expend all projected revenues. But, beginning in FY 2008, actual revenues fell short of projections, and general fund transfers were needed to cover HTF outlays. This cash flow shortfall was exacerbated by SAFETEA-LU’s structure, which intentionally set in motion a path to deplete the trust fund by setting investment levels that required the use of both incoming trust fund revenues and liquidation of the trust fund’s then multi-billion dollar surplus. Congress also created two independent commissions in SAFETEA-LU that were directed to come up with proposed solutions to the problem the law created—proposals on which Congress did not act. While trust fund revenues have rebounded and now exceed pre-recession levels, they are still not sufficient on their own to support the investment levels put in place by SAFETEA-LU. As a result, MAP-21 supplemented HTF revenues with $20 billion in resources from elsewhere in the federal budget to enable the new law to preserve existing levels of federal highway and public transportation investment for FY 2013 and FY 2014. The Elephant in the Room Members of both parties and on each side of Capitol Hill are promoting reforms they want to see in MAP-21’s successor. ARTBA and other stakeholder groups have also worked to develop policy priorities to advance during the reauthorization debate. Ensuring the operation and structure of the federal highway and public transportation programs deliver maximum benefit for the American public in terms of transportation improvements will always be a key ARTBA priority. There are, however, two realities to the discussion regarding the next surface transportation bill: MAP-21 was almost entirely a policy reform bill and most of those reforms will not have been implemented when the measure expires at the end of September; and no reauthorization bill will move forward until Congress addresses in some capacity the looming HTF revenue shortfall. ARTBA has been reporting for almost a year that the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projects existing trust fund revenues will be unable to support any new highway or public transportation investment in FY 2015. This means current “There are, however, two realities to the discussion regarding the next surface transportation bill: MAP-21 was almost entirely a policy reform bill and most of those reforms will not have been implemented when the measure expires at the end of September; and no reauthorization bill will move forward until Congress addresses in some capacity the looming HTF revenue shortfall.” ad to R by Dave Bauer e first
  13. 13. Jan.-Feb. 2014 TransportationBuilder 13 federal highway investment of $40.3 billion and transit funding of $10.7 billion would need to be reduced to zero in FY 2015 unless Congress acts. New Wrinkle in February CBO Report The CBO’s February 4 HTF revenue and spending projections add a new wrinkle to this dilemma as they now show the fund’s Highway Account will likely run short of cash to pay bills before FY 2014 ends. Due to lowered projections regarding overall U.S. economic performance, CBO now estimates the Highway Account will end FY 2014 with only $1 billion, which would cause cash-flow imbalances that could force the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to delay some payments to states for construction work performed on federal-aid highway projects. An injection of $3 billion would be needed to pay all anticipated bills for the remainder of the fiscal year and allow FHWA to manage cash-flow. In addition to the funds needed before the end of FY 2014, a three-month extension of MAP-21 will now require an infusion of $3 billion into the Highway Account, while a six-month extension would require just under $5 billion. No additional funds would be needed for the Mass Transit Account. A one-year extension of MAP-21, through September 2015, would require a revenue infusion totaling $19 billion—$3 billion for FY 2014 and $16 billion for FY 2015, including $13 billion for the Highway Account and $3 billion for the Mass Transit Account. A full six-year reauthorization funding the highway and mass transit programs at their current level, plus annual adjustments for inflation, would require a revenue infusion of just under $100 billion or an average of slightly less than $17 billion per year. While this situation clearly seems daunting, the fact remains that we have been here before. Congress has demonstrated time and again that the vast majority of members from both parties have no interest in massive cuts in highway and public transportation investment. In fact, Congress has on four separate occasions since 2008 overwhelmingly approved legislation to stabilize the HTF in the short-term and preserve existing levels of surface transportation investment. What’s Past is Prologue The last reauthorization process was stalled from October of 2009—when SAFETEA-LU expired—to February 2012—when the Senate Finance Committee developed a bipartisan plan to provide revenues to stabilize the Highway Trust Fund for two years. President Obama signed MAP-21 into law about four months later. Shakespeare wrote, “What’s past is prologue.” This perspective applies well to the current reauthorization situation—just as was the case with MAP-21, the next bill’s duration and investment levels, as well as when we are likely to see legislation move forward, will be defined by how and when Congress addresses the HTF’s recurring revenue shortfalls. This is why ARTBA’s primary focus since the enactment of MAP-21 has been educating members of Congress on the need to generate new revenues for the HTF, and working with our allies in the transportation community to engage the congressional tax committees and leadership of both parties about methods to advance a trust fund solution. The only people who see the reauthorization of the federal highway and public transportation programs as a quick process are those who have already given up. Two things that are clear at this point: we are in for a long haul; and ARTBA will be there until this journey ends. Dave Bauer is ARTBA senior vice president of government relations: d time and ag that the vast majority of members from both parties have no interest in massive cuts in highway and public transportation investment. In
  14. 14. Jan.-Feb. 201414 TransportationBuilder That’s why Corman Construction relies on the National Work Zone Safety Information Clearinghouse to ensure employee and motorist safety and health in road construction zones. The world’s largest cyber library of educational webinars, best practices, laws and regulations, statistics, training information and more is available at Highway contractor Bill Cox wants all his employees on the road to safety. Use It…Save Lives! Information provided by the National Work Zone Safety Information Clearinghouse, award #DTFH61-06-H-00015, does not necessarily reflect the views of the U.S. Federal Highway Administration, (FHWA) or the American Road & Transportation Builders Association-Transportation Development Foundation. References to specific products and services do not imply endorsement by the Clearinghouse or FHWA.
  15. 15. Jan.-Feb. 2014 TransportationBuilder 15 After a year that saw both strides in technology and setbacks to U.S. infrastructure, 2014 is poised to be a pivotal year in which the foundation will be laid for a major industry overhaul. This prediction is based on some significant advancements we saw from both within the ARTBA community and the broader architecture, engineering, construction and operations (AECO) industry in 2013 toward exploring and adopting technologies that are truly innovating the way we address today’s range of infrastructure problems, from everyday issues like our aging roads and bridges to emergency response to weather disasters. This assertion is also based on evidence of increased awareness from the general public. A recent “State of the Industry” survey, conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of Microdesk, revealed that 95 percent of Americans fear risks to U.S. infrastructure and expressed a desire to see more government attention as well as the application of technologies to help remediate the issues. This effectively puts us at a crossroads where advancements combined with perception shifts around technology, public engagement and building processes will culminate to bolster U.S. infrastructure both in the year to come and beyond. Engaging the Infrastructure Consumer Following a year in which Americans witnessed the devastating impact of natural disasters including Hurricane Sandy and infrastructure failures such as bridge and building collapses, Microdesk’s “State of the Industry” survey revealed Americans are keenly aware of the country’s failing infrastructure system. Consistent with other recent reports, including The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) 2013 report card, which gave U.S. infrastructure a grade D+, and The World Economic Forum’s 2013-2014 Global Competitive Report, which ranked U.S. infrastructure as 15th in the world, respondents to the Microdesk survey gave U.S. infrastructure a D grade. Beyond the general sentiment that our nation’s infrastructure systems are in rough shape, there is true concern that future failures are imminent. Perhaps not surprisingly, bridges and roads ranked at the top of the list of infrastructure systems of greatest concern; 63 percent cited bridges as being most vulnerable to damage and decay, and 26 percent said roads. What’s more significant than general public awareness about these problems, however, is the revelation that consumers also have decisive opinions about what actions should be taken to address our infrastructure challenges. For instance, there was strong sentiment that government should play a significant Vision 2014: Infrastructure at a Crossroads by Michael DeLacey
  16. 16. Jan.-Feb. 201416 TransportationBuilder role, with 93 percent of respondents agreeing that our leaders should focus on guiding change. Further, 28 percent felt that support should come in the form of funding, and one-third cited the need for a formalized revitalization plan. As both consumer awareness and engagement grows, now is an ideal time to begin laying the groundwork for encouraging increased consumer involvement to strengthen a collective call for the government to take action. Innovating Infrastructure with Technology In a world rapidly moving towards “smart cities,” Elon Musk’s Hyperloop and Google’s Driverless Cars, data and technology are already beginning to connect nearly every aspect of our lives, including how we as consumers interact with our infrastructure day-to-day. Therefore, it is imperative the industry responsible for designing and maintaining our nation’s infrastructure begin to prepare now for those “futuristic” ideas, which are likely to become reality by 2020. The past year has shown significant strides in the adoption of mobile devices for design, construction and operations and maintenance, as well as cloud computing for collabora- tion and improved workflows throughout the project lifecycle. Take some of the latest Building Information Modeling (BIM) design technologies like Autodesk InfraWorks. These solutions are changing the landscape of infrastructure design and pro- posal development by enabling rapid generation of accurate, data-rich 3D design layouts and site models that allow design- ers to more effectively analyze design alternatives and make smarter, more sustainable design decisions. Another example is with tools like Autodesk Sim 360 Pro, which are extending the ability to conduct complex design simulations beyond the world of product manufacturing and design. These tools now enable designers of buildings and infrastructure to conduct comprehensive site and building analyses that provide a whole new level of intelligence when it comes to exploring various scenarios, going beyond sustainable design and into proactive design. Further, these tools provide the ability to more effectively communicate designs to the public and other key stakeholders. Taken as an extension of the concept of gamification, we will begin to see these technologies help citizens become fully intelligent about the buildings they’re in and roads they’re driving on, as well as foster greater engagement of the public in the process of identifying solutions to our infrastructure challenges. The benefits of this are profound. According to Fast Company, not only are interconnected “smarter cities” more efficient and better optimize existing infrastructure, they also “break down bureaucracy in order to stimulate a creative, entrepreneurial economy.” Setting a Standard Of course, with these technology advancements come several challenges, not the least of which is the lack of financing for the vast list of infrastructure improvements that are needed to simply get us back on track, much less prepared for the future. The adoption of advanced technologies such as BIM is a proven means of addressing the need to reduce construction costs and do more with limited funds. However, simply encouraging adoption is not enough. Seventy-five percent of Americans agree: government attention in the form of laws is needed to improve infrastructure quality. Cities that have begun to implement formal standards that set a framework for the adoption of these tools and their application to the project delivery process are those that will be most effective at managing change. And indeed, some forward- thinking cities, such as New York City, are already leading the charge, with several of the city’s agencies having adopted BIM standards as a means of better managing project delivery, reducing construction costs, and providing the agencies with the ability to more effectively manage their assets. As advanced BIM technologies continue to become more mainstream and awareness of the benefits of BIM throughout the project lifecycle accelerates, we will most certainly see this trend extend to many more cities. In the absence of government mandates or where politics prevents progress towards adoption, we will see more private-sector owners and developers acting as drivers for change, as we are already wit- nessing with projects in New York, Boston and San Francisco. Innovation To be innovative is to consider any and all ideas, no matter how far-flung they may seem. Take autonomous vehicles. Given the proliferation of technology advancements we’ve seen in recent years, is it really so far fetched that we should someday be riding down the highway in a car that navigates itself? Mercedes-Benz and Toyota don’t think so; as they shared at ARTBA’s recent “Dr. J. Don Brock TransOvation™ Workshop,” both are investing heavily in developing these vehicles of the future. As an industry, we need to be similarly investing in developing plans for how our infrastructure will accommodate such advances. There were some extremely productive discussions at TransOvation™ around just that, where members from all corners of the industry representing every aspect of the project delivery process brainstormed how we might realistically develop the roads of the future. These sorts of collaborative conversations need to continue—and on a regular basis—in order for us to make real progress toward effectively addressing both the issues of today and the opportunities of tomorrow. By collaborating on outside-the-box ideas, leveraging the latest technologies, extending public involvement, and putting sound standards in place for implementing new processes, we will finally get moving down the road toward a more innovative infrastructure future. Michael DeLacey is Microdesk president:
  17. 17. Jan.-Feb. 2014 TransportationBuilder 17 26th Annual ARTBA Public-Private Partnerships in Transportation Conference SAVE THE DATE July 16 -18, 2014 Washington Court Hotel 525 New Jersey Ave. N.W. Washington, D.C. 20001 The nation’s premier and longest-standing event for P3s in transportation.
  18. 18. Jan.-Feb. 201418 TransportationBuilder
  19. 19. Jan.-Feb. 2014 TransportationBuilder 19 CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2014, March 4-8, at the Las Vegas Convention Center, is rightly built on the theme of exhibitors showing the most new products this year for the industry anywhere in the world. The show (along with the co-located IFPE 2014) is on track to feature more brand-new products with more innovative product benefits for contractors, producers and other customers than ever before. Worldwide industry support will make this year’s event the industry’s global gathering place in 2014. More than 95 allied associations and groups are official show-supporting organizations; hundreds of industry meetings and conventions will be held at the shows; key countries for industry business are hosting international exhibit pavilions; and leading U.S. and global manufacturers and service providers are showcasing their latest product innovations. Equipment users will get their first-look at cutting-edge construction equipment, and manufacturing leaders will be on hand as they reveal innovative offerings to show attendees. Glen Tellock, chair of the 2014 CONEXPO-CON/AGG exposition and president & chief executive officer of the Manitowoc Company Inc. in Manitowoc, Wis., has overseen the show’s management committee and is looking forward to being in the Manitowoc booth. “Manitowoc has an exciting array of new products and cutting-edge technology to present at CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2014. We are showing 12 cranes in all, many of which are brand new or haven’t been seen in North America. We are especially excited to show off a few engineering innovations that we believe will forever change the lifting industry,” Tellock said. IF IT’S NEW, IT’S HERE: CONEXPO- CON/AGG 2014 SHOW by Rich Jefferson
  20. 20. Jan.-Feb. 201420 TransportationBuilder Show management, however, stress that quality, not size, is the goal of the shows. A strategic alignment with needs of the industry has led to programs and events geared toward helping attendees and exhibitors achieve the most value out of their time. Rick Patek, the 2014 AEM chair and group president, aggregate and mining, at Astec Industries Inc., recently shared with show staff that his company would exhibit 47 products, of which 41 are new, in its booth. “We always look forward to CONEXPO-CON/AGG because we can spend quality time exchanging information with so many end-users of our company’s products,” Patek said. ARTBA has several events co-located with CONEXPO- CON/AGG, including a Board of Directors meeting, Briefing and Policy Round Table, Council of State Executives meeting, Woman’s Leaders Council meeting, and others. The principal sponsors of the show are the Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM), National Stone, Sand, and Gravel Association (NSSGA) and National Ready Mixed Concrete Association (NRMCA). IFPE 2014 is owned by the National Fluid Power Association and AEM, also producer and manager. “Attendees will find the newest products and technologies and technical experts ready to discuss product features and applications. In the space of a few days, in one place, visitors can examine and compare the best of what our industry has to offer,” said Megan Tanel, AEM vice president, exhibitions and events, and CONEXPO-CON/AGG show director. Record Exhibit Space Equals More New Products & Technologies CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2014 covers a record-breaking 2.3 million net square feet of indoor and outdoor exhibits, while IFPE 2014 covers an additional 160,000 square feet. 2014 Product and Technology Categories: Admixtures Aggregates Asphalt Production & Paving Blasting Compaction Concrete Cement Drilling Earthmoving Engines & Components Heavy-duty and Off-road Trucks Hydraulics Information Technology Lifting–Aerial & Cranes Lubricants Pumps Countless new products that meet the Tier 4 Final/ Stage IV emissions requirements will be shown for the first time.
  21. 21. Jan.-Feb. 2014 TransportationBuilder 21 Getting Around at the Shows: It’s Easier in 2014! The show planner—and a new, free mobile app—will help attendees move more easily. These online resources will allow attendees to search show maps and exhibitor lists by hall/lot location, booth number, company name and type of product; assemble their personalized daily schedule of booth visits and education; and edit it pre-show and onsite. The mobile app will be continually updated with exhibitor and event information and an up-to-the-minute Twitter feed. The mobile app is sponsored by Caterpillar Inc. Wayfinding upgrades at the shows include an enhanced internal shuttle system, better-defined product concentration areas, and knowledgeable onsite guides to answer questions and help attendees navigate the show floor. In lieu of printed show directories, printed map books will be available. “The goal, as with all our planning, is to create the most ROI for attendees and exhibitors, and these moves will definitely make a positive difference for 2014,” Tanel noted. Show Footprint Includes New Platinum Lot A new show footprint consolidates outdoor exhibit space into three large areas—Gold and Silver lots and the new Platinum lot—to create better attendee flow between outdoor and indoor exhibits. Located directly across from South Hall, the new Platinum Lot will cover 387,000 square feet and feature equipment for aggregate processing, asphalt paving, drilling and much more. The Platinum Lot will also host the primary registration hall. CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2014 will also feature a new “exhibit suites” option as an additional opportunity for targeted attendee-exhibitor interaction. Exhibit Pavilions & Lots On the CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2014 show floor, a new Demolition & Recycling Exhibit Pavilion, sponsored by the Construction & Demolition Recycling Association, will showcase exhibits and products specific to C&D recyclers and demolition contractors. Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) brings back its Technology & Construction Solutions pavilion for contractor software providers, finance and leasing companies, insurance providers, and related suppliers of contractor business solutions. International exhibit pavilions at both shows reinforce the global scope of the events and offer attendees access to a wider range of companies and product options. CONEXPO-CON/ AGG has five official country pavilions with China, Ireland, Korea, Spain, and the United Kingdom. CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2014 education—10 Tracks CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2014 education offers 120 sessions across 10 tracks to target the full range of attendee interests, including equipment management and maintenance, safety and regulations, recycling and preservation, earthmoving and site development, business management best practices, and workforce development, plus aggregates, asphalt, concrete, and cranes and rigging.
  22. 22. Jan.-Feb. 201422 TransportationBuilder A new education ticket plan allows more flexibility for attendees to choose sessions onsite. Allied industry groups will also offer training and certification programs in conjunction with the shows. “In addition to the exhibits on the show floor, this is where our attendees find the knowledge they need to better run their businesses and increase their ROI,” stated Tanel. Quality of Life Campaign A new feature at CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2014 show is a program that will publicly acknowledge some of the thousands of construction contractors who contribute every day to our quality of life. The CONEXPO-CON/AGG “Quality of Life Campaign” is bringing up to 50 of these contractors to Las Vegas for the show, where they will be recognized at a special breakfast. Each contractor and a guest will also receive complimentary show admission plus airline tickets to Las Vegas and two nights in a hotel room. The stories about their projects, including vital improvements such as well-maintained and safe roads and bridges, upgraded and fully functioning clean-water and sewer capabilities, and improved facilities for recreation, health, transit and other services, are posted in the Media Services section of the CONEXPO-CON/AGG website under “Contractors Build Quality of Life.” Dexter + Chaney, a company creating construction software for management and operations, is the exclusive sponsor of the “Quality of Life Campaign.” For information on how you can speak up for funding MAP-21 (the highway bill), visit the ARTBA booth (20049) and I Make America in the AEM booth (20051), in the Grand Lobby of the Las Vegas Convention Center. For registration information see Coming to CONEXPO-CON/AGG & IFPE 2014? Please see ARTBA at booth 20049 in the Grand Lobby of the Las Vegas Convention Center, next to AEM in booth 20051. Rich Jefferson is AEM senior director of public relations:
  23. 23. Jan.-Feb. 2014 TransportationBuilder 23 enough is enough RoadQuake 2 Temporary Portable Rumble Strip is designed to reduce accidents in work zones and save lives. Drivers, passengers and workers’ lives. Contractors: Improve safety in your work zones. Let us show you how. call us today Contact Tim Cox for a product demonstration: 216-244-3207 plasticsafety.com800-662-6338 2444 Baldwin Road Cleveland, Ohio 44104
  24. 24. Jan.-Feb. 201424 TransportationBuilder Centennial Reflections HNTB Corporation has been shaping America’s transportation network for more than 100 years. America looks a lot different than it did in 1914 when HNTB’s founders first opened the firm’s doors. What began as a promising group of engineers designing innovative movable bridges for railroads has grown to contribute to many of today’s largest, most complex bridge, highway, rail, airport, public buildings and public works projects in the U.S. Yet, after 100 years in business, HNTB has found some things haven’t changed, especially the importance of integrity and the power of a healthy transportation network to fuel economic progress. For us, recognizing a century in the infrastructure business is more than just an appreciation of our longevity, it’s really about how the firm has—and will continue—to help America grow by ensuring its people and commerce can move freely across the country. Throughout the U.S., our talented professionals are dedicated to making a difference in the communities where they live and work, helping shape and reshape America’s transportation network. That includes places like New York City, where we are helping with disaster response and recovery efforts follow- ing Superstorm Sandy; Kansas City, where we have served on the design-build team completing the LEED Gold-certified National Nuclear Security Administration National Security Campus; and in Los Angeles, where we are designing the Sixth Street Viaduct replacement project as well as runway improve- ments at Los Angeles International Airport. It’s an essential truth: Robust transportation infrastructure paves the way to a strong American economy. A strong infrastructure system creates jobs, promotes economic development and advances America’s competitiveness in the international marketplace. Safe, secure, efficient transportation pays us back in our day-to-day lives well in excess of every dollar we invest in them. In fact, Moody’s estimates every additional dollar spent on infrastructure generates a $1.44 increase in gross domestic product. When given a clear choice, Americans understand this. Last November, 91 percent of ballot measures to increase or extend funding for highways, bridges and transit passed across the country. Voters approved 68 percent of such measures in 2012, 55 percent in 2011 and 61 percent in 2010. Yet America’s national leaders are struggling to identify a vision for our country’s infrastructure future. We need a new and sustained vision. What innovations in our transportation infrastructure will be brought to life in the next 100 years? At HNTB, we believe part of that vision means broadening our horizons through a concept called multimodalism. For more than half of our firm’s lifespan, America has viewed transportation through our grandparents’ eyes, developing, expanding and funding each sector—highway, aviation, mass transit, rail—independently. These systems were the innova- tions of their time, but 21st century needs demand envisioning an integrated transportation system, a multimodal one, versus independent sectors. by Robert J. Slimp, PE Triborough Bridge, New York, N.Y. Photo courtesy of HNTB archives.
  25. 25. Jan.-Feb. 2014 TransportationBuilder 25 Our roads, rails, transit, airports, ports, bike lanes, and pedestrian systems should work in together to allow the entire system to perform more effectively and efficiently. With more transportation choices, we can accommodate more people and more commerce to serve our growing population. By 2050, the U.S. will be home to 100 million more people— equal to another California, Texas, New York and Florida. More people will mean a greater demand for transportation, and our highway system can’t be expected to handle it all. We must increase our infrastructure investment to catch-up on the growing backlog of all our transportation needs. Creating a plan that integrates all modes of transportation begins with the next transportation authorization bill, which will be debated by Congress this year. Now is the time to influence that legislation and create long-term funding solutions that support a multimodal transportation system. HNTB supports regional and federal transportation plans that include all modes, delivery and funding options. That includes projects like the State Route 99 Alaskan Way Viaduct and Seawall Replacement project in Seattle, the new Denver International Airport Transit Center, and the Miami Intermodal Center. Transportation is evolving, becoming interconnected, more sustainable. Soon our cars will be talking to each other and the roadway. Real-time transit and air travel updates will be sent to your mobile phone. Checking in at the airport or train station will be a simple as stepping onto the curbside. The way we plan, fund and deliver infrastructure needs to evolve as well. HNTB looks forward to contributing to next 100 years of U.S. transportation development. Robert J. Slimp, PE is HNTB Infrastructure CEO: Devil’s Slide Tunnels, San Mateo County, Calif. Photographer: Jeffrey G. Katz, courtesy of HNTB. Alaska Way Tunnel, Seattle, Wash. Photog- rapher: Vince Streano, courtesy of HNTB. Arroyo Seco Viaduct, Pasadena, Calif. Photo courtesy of HNTB archives. San Diego International Airport, San Diego, Calif. Photographer: Marble Street Studio, courtesy of HNTB.
  26. 26. Jan.-Feb. 201426 TransportationBuilder All ARTBA Meetings are held at Bally’s Resort & Casino MARCH 3-5 See the full ARTBA schedule and register online:
  27. 27. Jan.-Feb. 2014 TransportationBuilder 27 Transportation Construction: The Next Endangered Species? by Nick Goldstein Nick Goldstein is ARTBA vice president of environmental & regulatory affairs: The Endangered Species Act (ESA) is a federal statute aimed at protecting “threatened” and “endangered” species and preserving the habitat necessary for them to survive. Once a species is “threatened” or “endangered,” any unauthorized activity resulting in harm to the species, including indirect impacts from habitat modification, may result in a violation of the ESA. This sort of regulation can literally remove hundreds of miles of land from the possibility of any type of development or significantly restrict the timing of when construction may occur. In the transpor- tation arena, if an entire area is suddenly put “off limits” by an overly broad ESA decision or construction is prohibited for six months out of the year when a listed species inhabits the area, carefully designed plans for economic development might be unnecessarily placed in jeopardy. While the ESA has been around for decades now, it has been somewhat unjustly thought of as a “western issue.” However, recent events could change this perception dramatically. Specifically, the federal government has recently entered into a settlement with anti-growth organizations requiring expedited decisions on whether to list 757 new species as either “threatened” or “endangered” by the year 2018. This may result in at least three new federally-protected species in every state with some states such as Florida, Virginia, Kentucky, Nevada, Tennessee and California possibly gaining more than 50 new “threatened” or “endangered” additions. Already, this federal settlement resulted in 81 new species being brought under federal jurisdiction in 2013 alone! It’s also worth noting that Congress just increased the budget for listing species as threatened or endangered under the ESA in 2014 to $22 million, meaning the government has the resources to do much more in this arena. Penalties under the ESA can be severe. Criminal fines can run up to $100,000 per violation for individuals and up to $200,000 for organizations in addition to a maximum one year of prison time. Civil penalties may also be assessed up to $25,000 per violation. On top of all of this, the ESA requires lengthy and expensive consultations and analyses to minimize any impacts to listed species and their designated critical habitat for any project that relies on federal funding or requires a federal permit or approval. When the federal government lists all those new species and designates critical habitat for them, the result will be less and less areas where transportation improvements—or any development for that matter—can be located, added expense to project devel- opment, and project delays. The direct impact of the hundreds of new species which could soon be listed under the ESA was addressed by attorney W. Parker Moore, a principal with the law firm of Beveridge & Diamond, during a January 22 presentation to the ARTBA Environmental Committee. Moore noted, “Unfortunately, project developers in every state will feel the effects of this settlement, leading to project development headaches, increased costs, and delays for transportation construction. As a result, it now is crucial for developers and transportation planners to factor ESA issues into their plans early on and to take the steps necessary to minimize disruption of their projects.” Perhaps the most absurd fact in the entire ESA debate is that of all the species which have been listed as “threatened” or “endangered” by the Act, fewer than one percent have recovered! By that math, only about 7.5 of the 757 soon to be listed species have a chance at survival. What, then can be done? On a broad scale, the ESA is in desperate need of reform. ARTBA has been fighting to add common-sense fixes to the legislation for the better part of a decade now. Any time a new species is considered for “threatened” or “endangered” status, notice must be given in the “Federal Register” and the regulated community is given a chance to comment. ARTBA is monitoring federal decisions to list new species for protection under the act, and our long-standing efforts of “having the industry’s back” in the regulatory arena continue unabated.
  28. 28. Jan.-Feb. 201428 TransportationBuilder Transportation contractors are still facing a number of challenges, according to results from ARTBA’s latest quarterly contractor survey, although there are signs the market is stabilizing. Contractors expressed concern about uncertainty surrounding the future of the Highway Trust Fund and both federal and state revenues for transportation programs. For over 12 years, ARTBA’s “Transportation Construction Quarterly Industry Conditions Survey” has provided a real-world outlook on the highway, bridge and airport construction mar- kets. It is a valuable tool to identify market trends and support ARTBA advocacy efforts. The end of 2013 market remained flat for most contractors. Forty-seven percent of respondents were doing the same amount of construction work in the last quarter of 2013, compared to the same time in 2012. Backlogs The good news is backlogs are showing some improvement—39 percent of surveyed contractors reported backlogs in the fourth quarter of 2013 were up compared to 2012. Contractors still have the ability to take on more work. Nearly half of respondents reported working at 75 to 90 percent of their capacity. Wages & Materials Costs Upward pressure on wages and material costs continued to impact the bottom line. The level of wages and salaries paid to employees were about the same for most respondents, with 38 percent saying wages and salaries were on the rise. Profit margins were down for 45 percent and about the same for 30 percent. Project delays continued to impact most contractors, with 36 percent reporting design or owner-related problems. Over half said delays were caused by weather, while 16 percent reported unexpected delays in obtaining permits. Equipment Equipment purchase and equipment leasing outlooks indicate some transportation construction contractors will reduce the amount of equipment they buy or lease in the next year compared to the last 12 months. Survey participants emphasized the difficulties created by transportation funding, at both the state and federal levels. “We have continued concern about the uncertainty in determining the future cost for operating our business,” said one contractor. Another contractor indicated that “highway work has been flat or slower in some states.” There is also “extreme concern about inadequate highway revenues compared to needs” at both the state and federal level. According to the survey, the 2014 business outlook is showing signs of improvement. Fifty-seven percent expect sluggish growth for the transportation construction market in the coming year. About 14 percent expect a recession, down from 21 percent in the third quarter of 2013. ARTBA is forecasting modest growth in highway construction and a growing bridge market for 2014. With no new federal funding in MAP-21 and continued challenges for state and local finances, however, long-term growth is uncertain. Those interested in receiving the full results or participating in future surveys should contact ARTBA’s Tina Thirakounh at Participants receive a copy of the results. by Darwyyn Deyo Darwyyn Deyo is ARTBA research manager: Market Challenges Continue, ARTBA Contractors Survey Finds 57% Expecting sluggish growth in 2014 45% Profit margins are down 47% Construction work is about the same 39% backlogs are up 28% about the same What is the market outlook?
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  30. 30. Jan.-Feb. 201430 TransportationBuilder ADVERTISER INDEX Promote your company’s products and services in “Transportation Builder!” Contact ARTBA’s Peter Embrey at 202.289.4434 or Check out our rates in the 2014 media kit available at Advertise with “Transportation Builder” “ARTBA reserves the right, at its discretion and without liability of any nature whatsoever, to reject, cancel or suspend any advertising in whole or in part, in which case any fees paid in advance shall be refunded to the advertiser on a pro-rata basis.” CONSTRUCTION EQUIPMENT, PRODUCTS & SERVICES Wirtgen America Heritage Construction & Materials Caterpillar Inc. HIGHWAY SAFETY PRODUCTS & RESOURCES Roadway Safety + Training Program Work Zone Safety Clearinghouse Plastic Safety Systems LTAP Trinity SOFTWARE HCSS Federal Issues Program &Transportation Construction Coalition Fly-In JUNE 9-11, WASHINGTON, D.C. ARTBA Foundation 19th AnnualYoung Executive Development Program JUNE 9-12, WASHINGTON, D.C. 6th AnnualTransportation Construction Law & Regulatory Forum JUNE 11, WASHINGTON, D.C. 26th Annual Public-Private Partnerships in Transportation Conference JULY 16-18, WASHINGTON, D.C. ARTBA National Convention SEPTEMBER 7-9, RANCHO PALOS VERDES, CALIF. Dr. J. Don BrockTransOvation™ Workshop & Awards Program TBD MEETINGS & EVENTS Heritage Construction & Materials Building America’s Transportation Network
  31. 31. Jan.-Feb. 2014 TransportationBuilder 31 R Find us online at INNOVATION UNDERNEATH IT ALL ® QEXC1735 © 2014 Caterpillar. All Rights Reserved. CAT, CATERPILLAR, BUILT FOR IT, their respective logos, “Caterpillar Yellow,” the “Power Edge” trade dress as well as corporate and product identity used herein, are trademarks of Caterpillar and may not be used without permission. VISIT US AT CONEXPO!
  32. 32. Jan.-Feb. 201432 TransportationBuilder