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Tanana bridge may require US Steel

The following is from the Metal Bulletin, d. Nov 23,2011:

Domestic steel suppliers seeking a role on an upcoming Alaskan bridge project might look forward to a holiday treat from the North Pole, sources said.

The structural package has raised hopes for domestic mills and fabricators vying to take part of a project that has appeared to benefit mostly overseas steel suppliers so far. Both fabricators and service centers are making bids for the project, sources said, with some distributors being asked to bid f.o.b. North Pole, Alaska, for fabrication at that location. Fabricators outside Alaska would presumably bid fob Seattle or another point of departure in the Lower 48 states.

Previously, Alaska Railroad chose a Chinese fabricator to manufacture its bridge girders, which triggered outrage among potential domestic suppliers, some of whom complained they were originally led to believe they were on board to participate in the $18-million job.

But sources said it appears the lead time for the structural steel is relatively short — within the next month or two — which would make it difficult to procure the fabricated material overseas.

List prices for various beam products, fob mill, were estimated to be $840 to $960 per ton, were being discounted by as much as $80 per ton below published levels, according to market sources.

The job was previously reported to involve a relatively limited amount of four beam sizes that would be available from most domestic producers. However, there was more recent word this week that the requirement was being revised with at least one proprietary size.

Omaha, Nebraska-based Kiewit Corp, the lead contractor on the project, could not be reached for comment.

NOTE: Notice it was the AKRR, not DOD who negotiated with the Chinese on this. WAS THIS PROJECT NOT ORIGINALLY A DOD PROJECT?!?!?!?!? THE ARMY DID NOT ASK FOR A RAIL!!!!

Re: Tanana bridge may require US Steel

I just printed that out, I'll go across the street and ask them... mummkay?

Re: Tanana bridge may require US Steel

Well.... they said it was cheaper, and I said this is paid for with US tax dollars, they said they spend plenty in the US. I said that even if it were more expensive, it would be better to keep the money in America. They dropped off a ham from Delta meats, a nice ARR poster and a map to show how much noise I have to put up with. As they left, I said Merry Christmas and got a Happy Holidays in return, how politically correct!


Re: Tanana bridge may require US Steel

Nice of them to sidestep your question and pat you on the head, the 'turds.

BTW, the article was posted in the Newsminer, then yanked. I did a temporary subscription to the Metal Bulletin to lift it and post it here. IIRC, Dermot had made mention. BUT you can't find it when you go to search for it.

Can't help but wonder who pulled those strings. Gotta keep at their heels.

This excerpt is from the Alaska Journal of Commerce (, dtd Nov 11, 2011:

Jon Spring of Anchorage Metropolitan Area Transportation Solutions said his group estimated more than $3 billion in projects that Anchorage needs. Alaska Railroad Corp. President and Chief Executive Officer Christopher Aadnesen said there are projects ahead that will be impossible for the railroad to fund on its own. The Tanana River Bridge and Port MacKenzie are examples.

“State funding will play a larger role going forward for building Alaska’s transportation infrastructure in light of decreased federal resources and we feel that every day at the railroad corporation,” he said. “Planning ahead for large infrastructure investments, prioritizing them and providing for a steady state-funding source are all great worthy goals of this legislation.”