Drilling Down

Rover Pipeline to Spend $85M with Ohio Companies

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Rover Pipeline LLC is placing more than $85 million worth of orders from Ohio-based companies – including a distributor in Struthers — for components needed to construct the Ohio leg of a 711-mile pipeline system that will run from West Virginia and western Pennsylvania to Michigan.

“It’s nice to see something like this here,” said Andrew Rankin, inside sales representative for Oklahoma-based Industrial Pipeline Specialists, which operates a distribution center at the Castlo Industrial Park in Struthers.

Industrial Pipeline Specialists secured part of a $27 million award with Warren Group/Allied Fitting based in Fairfield, Rover Pipeline said. The companies will provide weld fittings, weld flanges and pipeline materials such as bolts and gaskets toward the projects.

“We’re supplying a lot of the main valves and fittings for the project,” Rankin told The Business Journal. The company supplies the chemical, oil and gas, and water industries. “We do just about everything,” he said.

This new contract helps to offset some of the hit that oil and gas suppliers have taken since the price of oil began to tumble last year. “It helps to supplement the slow market,” Rankin said.

Industrial Piping opened its operation in Struthers nearly three years ago as energy companies began drilling in earnest for oil and gas in eastern Ohio’s Utica shale. “We had someone up here for about a year before we opened,” Rankin said. “It got to the point where we need of a place to keep our inventory.”

Among the major vendors to the project are Ariel Corp., based in Mount Vernon, Emerson Process Management Automation in Mansfield, Tiger Sand & Gravel in Massillon, Pioneer Pipe in Marietta and Lincoln Electric in Cleveland.

“We are pleased to be a part of the Rover Pipeline project and to be able to provide jobs for Ohio citizens who will be responsible for the design, manufacture, and support of the compression equipment for the project,” said Robert Drews, director of marketing for Ariel, which has the largest contract with $34.7 million. “We are committed to supporting Ohio’s natural gas infrastructure and local economies in Ohio.”

The $4.2 billion pipeline will originate in northern West Virginia and then cross into southeastern Ohio. A connection would also feed from the oil and gas-rich areas of southwestern Pennsylvania into the main line through the Buckeye State.

Rover Pipeline’s route angles northwest across Ohio and touches Monroe, Belmont, Noble, Harrison, Jefferson, Tuscarawas, Carroll and Stark counties in the Utica region. It will then move through the western counties of Wayne, Ashland, Richland, Crawford, Seneca, Hancock, Wood, Henry, Defiance, and Fulton before turning north into Michigan.

Rover Pipeline wants to transport natural gas from the Utica and Marcellus shale plays to U.S. markets in the Great Lakes region, the Midwest and the Gulf Coast.

The project is projected to create 6,500 construction jobs, the company said. Rover estimates that more than $90 million will be paid landowners for easement rights, while another $135 million in state taxes would be paid during the first year of service.

The project is before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. If approved, construction could begin next January and be completed by June 2017.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.