Subcontractors eager for Colorado stimulus road projects
DENVER, Colorado ” A meeting Friday where state transportation officials described road projects getting federal stimulus money drew more than 200 people, mostly subcontractors who have watched private projects dry up in the weak economy.
The crowd filled a Colorado Department of Transportation auditorium and spilled into a second room to hear about nine road and bridge projects in Denver and eastern Colorado getting ready to accept bids.
“So many people are scrambling for so few projects,” said Patricia Cooper, chairperson of CG Construction in Englewood.
Overall CDOT expects Colorado to get more than $500 million in stimulus money for transportation projects statewide.
“This is the time for me to grow,” said David Valladolid, owner-operator of a single-man dump truck company based in Lakewood. “My intentions are to purchase additional equipment and hire people who need to work.”
Subcontractors hoping to receive some of the work could talk with prime contractors at the meeting. Representatives of work force centers also attended to offer information about potential workers.
The projects include one to widen part of Colorado 9 between Breckenridge and Frisco, and another to manage areas where truckers would chain up during snowy weather on Interstate 70.
The projects have set goals for providing at least some work to small businesses and to provide a certain amount of on-the-job training to new workers in the industry.
Because the projects are getting stimulus money, contractors and subcontractors also will be required to submit monthly employment reports.
Some firms said they were unsure what to expect from the stimulus funding, which President Barack Obama intended to reinvigorate the economy, in part by getting businesses and people back to work.
“We’ll see what happens after this,” said Timothy Jackson, president of Jackson Construction Inc.