The Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) in collaboration with the Maricopa Association of Governments (MAG) and the Arizona Division of the Federal Highway Administration (ADFHA) have announced that the US$1.9 billion South Mountain Freeway project will be developed under the design-build-maintain (DBM) delivery model.
The DBM delivery approach will be used in the event that the Final Environmental Impact Statement indicates a preferred alternative rather than the no-build option.
The design-build-maintain delivery mechanism will include a long-term maintenance component but will not include a private finance option. ADOT, MAG and ADFHA have decided to use available public funds together with public financing to pay for the project.
This decision was made after more than a year's worth of analysis following the submission of an unsolicited proposal. The submission provided an opportunity for ADOT to explore several ways of delivering the project in the event the federal environmental impact process recommends a preferred alternative. This extensive analysis considered a traditional design-bid-build approach, several design-build options, and public-private partnership (P3) alternatives including those with maintenance options, private finance options, or both. Using a Value for Money approach, ADOT and its partner agencies determined which approach would provide the best value for Arizona taxpayers, which would allow the agency to mitigate risk most effectively, and which would provide the most efficient delivery option.
In early march ADOT hold an Industry Forum related to the proposal to develop and deliver a freeway system expansion in Maricopa County as a public-private partnership (PPP) project.
Over 80 people from 51 companies attended the two-hour event. Companies present at the event included: ACS, Balfour Beatty, Ferrovial, Fluor,Granite, Kiewit, Macquarie, Meridiam, OHL, Plenary Group, Parsons Corporation, and Vinci among others,
On 7 Feb. 2014, ADOT invited interested parties to respond to the Request for Information launched for the project in order to obtain information, industry's perspective and feedback on how the procurement process would work to help them with advanced planning and development efforts.
In August 2013, the South Mountain Development Group, a group of private companies led by Kiewit Development Co., and including Kiewit Infrastructure West Co., Sundt Construction, Inc. and Parsons Corporation, suggested a public-private partnership to construct the proposed South Mountain Freeway in Arizona.
The Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) for the project is expected in mid to late September. No further procurement activities will move forward until the FEIS is released. Following the FEIS, ADOT will launch the tender process by issuing a Request for Qualifications.