Rehab Roars

By Robert Carpenter, Editor | July 2009 Vol. 64 No. 7

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.

While the current recession has slowed that growth, the rehabilitation market is still demonstrating remarkable resiliency and is positioned to capitalize more on stimulus monies than perhaps other markets. And, no doubt rehab will bounce back quicker in the coming years than many other market niches.

The rehab market dynamic is largely based upon the increasingly dismal condition of America’s underground infrastructure. Other parts of the world, especially Europe, have been dealing with similar problems for decades. The European public generally takes infrastructure rehab and often subsequent short-term inconveniences much more in stride than their U.S. counterparts. But we’re learning to be patient and even more strident with our demands for infrastructure renewal.

Rehabilitation technologies and methods continue to evolve dramatically in North America as the need to repair our crumbling infrastructure becomes even more desperate. Much of the technology is being imported and adapted from abroad. Increasingly, however, innovation is now coming from North American manufacturers.

Although water rehabilitation is still in its infancy, there still has been an explosion of technology and equipment developed for this niche just over the past five years.

July's annual Rehabilitation Selection Guide, compiled by Senior Editor Traci Read, reflects the expanding nature of rehab technology. Every year, the diversity and scope of the listings expands substantially. We are constantly refining and adding categories.

We’ve got a long road to travel, but the rehab market continues to gain strength in ongoing efforts to effectively, efficiently and economically meet the needs of the North American rehab market.

The stimulus wait

Still waiting on your “stimulus” funding fix? You’re not alone. Funding is slow to trickle out and often in too small amounts to be effective.