FL transit agency selects design–build team for $235M parkway

Dive Brief:

  • The Florida Department of Transportation has announced its selection of a design–build team to construct a $234.5 million section of the Wekiva Parkway in Central Florida, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
  • Superior Construction, based in Jacksonville, FL, is the lead contractor for the project and will start construction on the 6-mile, elevated toll road later this year. Work includes building three bridges over the Wekiva River.
  • The project also includes three wildlife bridges, totaling 23,000 feet in length, to connect animals to state forests and reserves. FDOT has imposed special requirements on the contractor and construction process in order to protect the Wekiva River.      

Dive Insight:

State transportation departments are increasingly choosing design–build as a way to execute major infrastructure projects. For example, the Texas Transportation Commission awarded Grand Parkway Infrastructure — a joint venture between Ferrovial Agroman US, Granite Construction and Webber — a $1.25 billion Houston-area parkway project last month.

Other states like New York and California are expanding their design–build laws to allow the method to be used on publicly funded projects. California passed design–build legislation in recent years that allows the method to be used on state transportation projects, but any design–build contract must be with the contractor. Lisa Dal Gallo, partner at Hanson Bridgett, said this is a necessity because contractors are typically in the management position and are better suited to handle schedules and engage in cost controls.  

In November, the Orange County Transportation Authority authorized the largest design–build contract in the county's history and the first transportation project under the new law — $1.2 billion for Interstate 405 lane expansions.

Other alternative project delivery methods, especially public–private partnerships, could significantly factor into President Donald Trump's $1 trillion infrastructure plan. One of the core pieces of his proposal is to allow for major private investment into key projects in return for large tax credits. However, details of his infrastructure program and a schedule for releasing the plan are still up in the air.

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Filed Under: Infrastructure Corporate News
Top image credit: Flickr; Joel Penner