Capital project spending at U.S. cement manufacturing plants could possibly exceed 2006 figures by 10 to 25 percent, a total of $2.7 billion for 125 projects, according to research conducted by Industrial Info Resources.
Currently, there are 65 active projects, totaling more than $1.8 billion, which began construction in 2006. The projects range from grassroot plant construction to new import terminals to major maintenance shutdown work.
Industrial Info's research takes into account an industry-wide Confidence Factor of 70 percent (Confidence Factor is based on 58-month historical spending trend analysis), and the forecast for project spending to remain above 2006 levels depends on the outcome of several major expansion projects including Lafarge North America ($420 million), California Portland Cement Co. ($400 million), Buzzi Unicem USA ($262 million), and Ash Grove Cement Co. ($250 million).
In 2006, the highest cement project activity was recorded in the West Coast, and the Southeast, where three major cement manufacturing capacity expansion projects began construction in Florida.
Although project activity in the Southeast and the West Coast will remain at high levels for 2007, its the Rocky Mountains area that is expected to see the biggest growth, Industrial Info forecasts.
There are 16 projects, with a total investment value of $643 million, planned for the Rocky Mountains region, while the Southeast is looking at 20 projects with a $428 million value, Industrial Info said.