The ongoing COVID-19 health crisis has impacted nearly every aspect of life in 2020. One area, in particular, that has felt the strain is the construction industry. A recent article from Construction Dive takes a closer look at infrastructure projects around the country that have been put on hold or outright canceled due to the effects of the virus.
All together, those projects total more than $9.6 billion. The impact of those stalled projects could be felt for years to come, as contractors worry a declining economy will put even more projects on hold.
Vice President of Public Affairs at the Associated General Contractors of America details that concern, saying, “We don’t have a road building member that isn’t very nervous about the foreseeable future when it comes to how much work they have. Most road builders don’t just work on public projects. They also do paving for everything from distribution centers to shopping malls. A lot of our guys are telling us their private sector work has dried up, too, so they’re kind of getting hit from both sides.”
To cope, infrastructure departments are looking to Congress for relief. Over the past month, the American Society of Civil Engineers released a plan for 50 ready-to-build projects, asking for the necessary funding. Similarly, the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials asked Congress for $37 billion to aid in losses at various state transportation departments.
Of course, the progression of the virus and a continuation in rising cases could impact the government’s decision to create aid packages.
There is a silver lining for contractors, however, as Illinois Governor, Jay Pritzker, recently released a five-year infrastructure plan that will improve more than 3,000 miles of roadway. Whether the pandemic puts a wrench in those plans is yet to be seen.
Check back here for more infrastructure updates as we continue navigating this difficult year, together.
You can read the full Construction Dive article here.