There are 793 active industrial projects scheduled to begin construction in 2005 and beyond in the “Lone Star State,” according to Houston-based Industrial Information Resources (IIR). These projects have a total investment value of more than $34.5 billion.

This makes Texas the third largest state for projects in the pre-construction stage in the United States, after California and Alaska. California has a large, established industrial base, and is also home to a significant number of infrastructure projects, such as the planning for light rail expansion. Alaska may surprise many as being the second state because it has a very small industrial base, but its natural resources are attracting development of several very large oil and gas processing, storage, and pipeline projects in the pre-construction stage. On the other hand, in Texas, power generation, LNG storage and distribution, and petrochemical processing lead project development.

Texas is divided into 12 distinct market zones. Texas Zone 7, which is home to the largest concentration of petrochemical plants in North America, leads all Texas market zones in planned capital and maintenance spending with more than $7.3 billion in 256 active projects. Texas Zone 7 is centered on Harris County, Texas, and encompasses 12 surrounding counties: Galveston, Chambers, Liberty, Montgomery, Walker, Waller, Fort Bend, Austin, Colorado, Wharton, Matagorda, and Brazoria. The top three projects are all large-scale hydrocarbon storage and distribution terminals, including two large LNG Terminals along the Gulf Coast and an expansion of the strategic petroleum reserve. All of these projects are in the $500 million range and up.

After Texas Zone 7, there are three market zones in Texas that have planned project spending above $4 billion. Texas Zone 5, which includes the Corpus Christi area, has 76 projects with a Total Industrial Volume (TIV) of almost $4.6 billion. Texas Zone 8, which includes the greater Dallas-Fort Worth area, has 90 projects with a TIV of $4.57 billion. And Texas Zone 3, which encompasses the capital city of Austin and surrounding counties, has just over $4 billion in TIV from 65 projects.