Infrastructure study findings spell gains for precast methods

Demand for precast concrete in infrastructure products is projected to increase 4.4 percent annually, to $2.4 billion by 2022, with growth fueled by the need to repair the nation’s aging network of bridges, highways, roads and railroad tracks; increased adoption of the method over traditional cast-in-place alternatives; and, efforts by the federal government to increase surface transportation investment.

The five-year market outlook is presented in “Precast Concrete Products In the US, 4th Edition” from Cleveland market researcher Freedonia Group. Through 2022, authors note, demand for precast concrete bridge components is expected to increase 5.8 percent annually, to $1.1 billion, the fastest pace of any infrastructure component. Demand growth will be driven by a) the high number of bridges currently rated as structurally deficient that will require significant maintenance and repairs; and, b) increased usage of precast concrete bridge components as the absence of curing requirements and other site factors typical of cast-in-place methods allows bridge repair and replacement jobs to be completed more quickly—minimizing disruptions for motorists and waterway traffic.

Freedonia researchers find that certain transportation infrastructure applications will continue to command cast-in-place concrete or structural steel specifications, owing primarily to short-term cost savings potential. “Precast Concrete Products” (July 2018, 175 pages) is available for $5,200. — 440/684-9600,