Transit projects spur concrete-tie activity

This past year has been a busy one for concrete-tie suppliers, who've been tackling a flurry of orders from their transit-rail clients. Rocla Concrete Tie Inc., for example, started building a manufacturing plant in Fort Pierce, Fla., as part of a long-term supply agreement with All Aboard Florida and Florida East Coast Railway. At the same time, L.B. Foster Co. received concrete-tie orders from Seattle's Sound Transit and Toronto's GO Transit. For execs at these companies, this activity indicates that things are moving in the right direction, financially-speaking.

"The concrete tie business is really solid," said Steve Burgess, vice president of concrete products at L.B. Foster.

Last month, I got in touch with Burgess to learn a bit more about the concrete tie market. I compiled my findings from that conversation and other outside research in a brief write-up in our October issue.

How do you think the concrete tie market will fare in 2016? Or in the next several years? Will transit-rail continue to drive activity in the market? As always, feel free to share your thoughts here or on our website.

1 Reply

  • Commuter rail seems to me the right starting point to launch the business case for concrete ties in North America. The mainline freight railroads will not serve as first buyers for the next time, since their budgets and technical requirements do not match at the moment.
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