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Jacobs (J) to Design West Lake Commuter Rail Corridor Extension

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Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. (J - Free Report) has received a contract from the F.H. Paschen and Ragnar Benson Joint Venture to design an eight-mile long West Lake Corridor extension of the South Shore commuter rail line that links Hammond and Dyer, IN. This extensive rail line will help to access the developing places of Lake County, IN that connects to Chicago.

The owner, the Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District, estimates the cost of this design-build project to be $933 million. The project is likely to be completed in 2024.

As a result of this West-Lake Corridor, the Lake County residents will be benefited from increased employment opportunity and have faster access to Chicago entertainment options. Also, the eight-mile-long corridor will include four new stations with parking, park-and-ride areas, ADA parking and station access.

Senior vice president of Jacobs’ People & Places Solutions, Gary Morrison said, "Improving accessibility, creating jobs and generating economic, social and environmental benefits strongly aligns with Jacobs' values, connecting Lake County area residents to Chicago and Cook County, Illinois is a step toward how we'd like to reimagine mobility for tomorrow in the Midwest.”

Methodical project implementation has been one of the main factors driving Jacobs’ performance over the last few quarters. This company’s ongoing contract wins are a testimony to the fact. Backlog at fiscal 2020-end totaled $23.8 billion, reflecting an increase of 5.5% year over year basis. Notably, Jacobs’ backlog was up 4.7% year over year for the quarter to $14.7 billion.

Share Performance

Jacobs’ shares have outperformed the industry over the past year. The price performance was backed by an impressive earnings surprise history. The company surpassed earnings estimates in 10 of the trailing 12 quarters. The trend is expected to continue in 2021, courtesy of its robust results for fiscal 2020 despite the hurdles created by the COVID-19 outbreak.


The company has launched the Focus 2023 initiative, with expected benefits of more than $200 million versus fiscal 2020.

Zacks Rank

Jacobs — which shares space with Quanta Services, Inc. (PWR - Free Report) , AECOM (ACM - Free Report) and KBR, Inc. (KBR - Free Report) in the same industry — currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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