Editor's Log

Robert Carpenter, Editor

This issue marks our “lucky” 13th Annual Municipal Infrastructure Survey. It allows us to connect more closely with municipalities of all sizes and from all corners of the country.Tiny towns have just as many seemingly insurmountable issues as do the large metropolises. Yet, many of the concerns and issues are identical.

Over the past few months, I have been asked the same question countless times. With hope in their eyes, industry personnel all are asking for my take on 2010 market prospects. While it is impossible to predict in these uncertain times, here’s an early evaluation.

Robert Carpenter, Editor

This December brings one of the most disconcerting periods we’ve ever faced as an industry. There are so many factors impacting the underground infrastructure market that it is hard to grasp all the implications, let alone find solid direction for which to set course in 2010.

During the 2008 national elections, there was much rhetoric about leadership. Unfortunately, in regards to the energy industry, that leadership has failed miserably with no indication of sanity any time soon.

Robert Carpenter, Editor

It’s no surprise that utilities in new subdivisions typically are placed underground. But what’s really encouraging is that a growing number of cities and states are suggesting or, in some cases, actually stipulating that older lines should be moved underground when feasible.

I was pleasantly surprised recently when the annual American Society of Civil Engineers’ Pipeline Conference experienced strong attendance.

Robert Carpenter, Editor

I read recently that a bipartisan group of lawmakers is proposing to raise about $10 billion a year for the rehabilitation of sewer and water systems. The funding sources?

Robert Carpenter, Editor

Over the past 15 years, the underground utility rehabilitation market has exhibited a strong pattern of growth, particularly in the sewer and storm water market.

Robert Carpenter, Editor

This issue contains the 2009 edition of Underground Construction’s annual horizontal directional drilling survey. This industry-exclusive research always provides an insightful perspective as to the direction and health of this vibrant young industry.

Robert Carpenter, Editor

I’ve been hearing some encouraging housing news. Economic experts are reporting that the devastating housing meltdown the country has been experiencing for some time has just about reached its economic bottom, or is in the process of bottoming out.

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