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Thread: Design and build transportation projects

  1. #1

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    Design and build transportation projects

    I am being told by the Vermont Agency of Transportation that it is impossible to use federal transportation dollars to enter into a design and build lease for a park and ride lot. This seems unlikely to me. Do any Cyburbanites have experience with design and build arrangements for transportation facilities? Or can you point me toward someone or some reference? Thanks!

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Zoning Goddess's avatar
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    We've done several, and they've worked well. I'll PM a contact with our agency.

  3. #3
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    How you can do that is going to be heavily guided by state regulations. I ran into this in Wisconsin, where the state requires competitive bidding on most projects over $15,000 in value. Design-build is therefore impossible, except...

    You can do a contract for construction management. Basically, you do a qualification-based selection for an architect and project manager. Subcontracts (electrical, general construction, cement, etc) are still bid competitively, but through the construction manager, who can be a general contractor and can also bid on the contracts.
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  4. #4

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    Thanks for the advice so far. I may need to be a little more specific. I am talking about a project that would be designed, built, and owned by a private party, and paid for with FHWA funds via a lease.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    Hmmm... Different animal altogether. I tend to agree with you, Lee. I would not think it could be built with FHWA funds. Is it for private use or public? Would fees be charged to the people that park there?
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  6. #6

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    I guess I am confused about why FHWA would not be willing to save the truly vast quantities of money such an arrangement would save.

  7. #7
    Cyburbian DetroitPlanner's avatar
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    FHWA is very skiddish when it comes to public-private partnerships. In many ways they say the embrace them, but their actions are not always the same.

    Just curious, are you proposing to use a non-eligible funding source such as NHS on a non-NHS roadway? CMAQ might work, but a parking garage with CMAQ money is a tough sell politically as it would benefit only the developer and the transit users at that particular station.

    I know a great deal about the federal-aid highway process, enough to know that when it comes to public-private partnerships that you need to bring in experts.

  8. #8

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    Detroit Planner: Who ARE the experts?

  9. #9
    Cyburbian jmello's avatar
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    Massachusetts just had an awful experience with its first major design-build transportation project. Look up the Route 3 north add-a-lane/widening project and you are sure to find plenty of negative material.

  10. #10
    Cyburbian DetroitPlanner's avatar
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    By experts I would mean hired guns, consultants, lawyers. People who specialize in transportation planning in your state.

  11. #11
    Cyburbian nuovorecord's avatar
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    Is this park and ride also going to be used as a transit facility? According to this memorandum issued by FHWA, it seems STP dollars may be eligible for the project you describe.

    "Transit capital projects, including vehicles and facilities, publicly or privately owned, that are used to provide intercity bus service; transit safety improvements, transit research, development and technology transfer."
    "There's nothing wrong with America that can't be fixed by what's right with America." - Bill Clinton.

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