When U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown visited McDonald Steel on Wednesday, November 10th, to tout the benefits of the recently enacted Bipartisan Infrastructure Plan he was greeted by company officials who said they are both eager and able to meet increased demand for specialty steel shapes that will be driven by the hundreds of billions of dollars the legislation dedicates to road, bridge, and rail construction.
“This plan makes a huge investment in the future of steel production right here in the Mahoning Valley,” Sen. Brown said after touring McDonald’s 14” hot roll mill. “We fought to make sure this bill has the strongest Buy America rules ever passed. That’s going to mean more work for steel made in America, more work for McDonald Steel, and job creation up and down the supply chain.”
Company President Jim Grasso’s reaction was emphatic and succinct: Bring it on because here at McDonald we do infrastructure.
“Today, more than a century after this mill opened, McDonald Steel is in an incredibly strong position to thrive in the 21st Century thanks to the massive and long-overdue investment in the nation’s infrastructure championed by Senator Brown,” Grasso said. “The $110 billion in funding for roads, including $40 billion for bridge repair and construction, along with the $66 billion for railroads will create increased demand for the specialty shapes we produce—demand we are ready and more than able to meet.”
Mike Havalo, Vice President of Sales and Marketing, noted that McDonald Steel is already recognized as one of the nation’s leading manufacturers of bridge expansion joints, bridge grid decking, railroad joint bars, railroad track brake shoes, railroad D-bars, as well as railroad car brake beams.
“Our steel grid deck was used on the Peace Bridge which connects Buffalo, NY, and Canada and we are now suppling components to the companies working on the Ambassador Bridge in the Detroit area,” Havalo said. “We’ve become a major player in the bridge sector because contractors know they can depend on McDonald to deliver the high-quality shapes they need on time and on budget order after order, project after project, day after day. We are confident our reputation not just meeting, but exceeding customer expectations will make us a ‘go-to’ supplier when bridge construction begins across the United States.”
McDonald’s ability to roll more than 500 asymmetrical and symmetrical hot rolled steel shapes and custom design capability will enable the company to compete for and secure business in the other industries that will be impacted by infrastructure plan. “From material handling to auto and truck making, to water transmission, to construction, if a company needs a hot-rolled specialty shape, we can produce it,” he said. “That is why we are very excited about the future.
Grasso said that along with its commitment to quality, customer service, and extensive product line, McDonald possesses one more advantage that places the company in an extremely strong position to capitalize on the vastly increased infrastructure spending: reliable sources of domestic steel that will enable the firm to comply with the bipartisan plan’s strong “Buy USA” provisions.
“The solid relationships we have forged with domestic steelmakers have enabled us to weather the supply chain challenges that have impacted our competitors,” he commented. “Now those relationships will have the added benefit of giving us a head start when demand for steel increases rapidly in the months ahead. We are already receiving inquires from customers and potential customers in anticipation of the money flowing into the economy. We are committed to turning those inquiries into orders that will fuel growth at McDonald well into the future.”