The U.S. rail infrastructure market was valued at USD 5.06 billion in 2017 and expected to grow over the forecast period on account of increasing need for better transportation due the increasing population and demographics in the country. Since 1860, rail transportation is playing significant role in the country. This transportation system carries about one-third of the U.S export, delivers approximately 85,000 passengers and more than 4 million tons of freights. Increasing investment especially in private rail infrastructure is projected to boost the market in the foreseeable future. Moreover, ageing rail infrastructure in the country is expected to provide growth opportunity for the market in the coming years.
U.S. rail infrastructure market revenue split, by type, 2017 (% share)
The states in the U.S. are growing owing to the migration of rural population in the cities for better life style and education. Increasing problems associated with parking space and traffic congestion have led many governing bodies to think on better and safer transportation system. Governing bodies in the country are investing in new rail line to avoid congestion. Thus, increasing need for better and advanced transportation system in the U.S. is projected to fuel the market over the forecast period.
Segmentation by type
• New track construction
• Track addition & maintenance
Increasing population & demand coupled with the need for advanced transportation system are the main factors driving the growth of new track construction market over the forecast period. According to U.S. Department of Commerce, the number of vehicles in this segment has grown by nearly 20% from 2000 to 2016. According to American Public Transportation Association, in 2016, number of light rail passengers in 14 United States cities grew by an average of 4.3%, wherein Houston, New Orleans, Baltimore, Seattle, and Phoenix showed nearly double-digit growth. Increasing problems related to traffic congestion as well as parking space had led parliaments and many city administrations to rediscover the advantage of mass transit which in turn is expected to have positive impact on the market grow.
In 2017, track addition & maintenance is projected to grow overall the forecast period on account of increasing volume of passengers in this country. Growing spending on freights railroads is anticipated to add market growth over the forecast period. Around 1,40,000-mile private freight rail network is the backbone of U.S. economy and it is the base for the movement of people and goods by rail. Increase in spending on infrastructure and maintenance is anticipated to foster the market over the forecast period.
Segmentation by Ownership
• Private rail road
• Public rail road
United States rail network comprised of over 1,00,000 bridges and 1,40,000 miles of track. This rail network is divided into two categories namely private railroads and passenger rail. In 2017, private railroad accounted for held major share of overall market share and it is anticipated to grow on account of increasing population coupled with investment by private players.
The United States invest very small amount in public railroad. It is heavily dependent on government funding for capital investment. It is accounted for smaller share of overall market share in 2017. Private railroads are responsible for the condition of nations track, connections at ports, bridges, and intermodal facilities. Increasing transportation of goods is anticipated to be the key driving factor for private railroads in this country. Rebuilding of tunnels, tracks, bridges, and signal systems is anticipated to upgrade private rail networks to provide added efficiency, greater capacity, and improved safety.
The U.S. rail infrastructure industry is expected to posse’s huge potential owing to growing population, growing use of private rail freights for transportation, and urbanization. Rail infrastructure industry in United States is consolidated in nature with limited number of industries operating in this country accounted for most of the market shares. Some of the well-known players in this industry include National Railroad Passenger Corporation, BNSF Railway Company, Norfolk Southern Corp, The Kansas City Southern Railway Company, and Union Pacific Railroad Company. In addition, approval of light rail extension projects in this country is expected to add market growth over the forecast period. For instance, in November 2017, Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority approved build and design agreement for Boston’s green line light rail extension.
Research Support Specialist, USA