Kiewit and Macquarie close financing for Goethals Bridge

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Kiewit and Macquarie close financing for Goethals Bridge

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goethals - 250.jpg New Goethals Bridge

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and NYNJ Link Partnership, a venture comprised of private companies Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets Inc., and Kiewit Development have reached financial close for designing, building, financing and maintaining the new Goethals bridge and demolishing the old one, the Port Authority said.

Port Authority Executive Director Pat Foye, said:
"Reaching financial close is another significant milepost on our journey to completing the region's first true surface transportation public-private partnership in the northeast region. Governors Cuomo and Christie have tasked us with coming up with creative solutions to rebuild our critical infrastructure, and we believe this project will serve as an example for building major transportation infrastructure in the northeast while leveraging private capital and expertise."

U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx on November 5th announced a Transportation Infrastructure Finance Innovation Act (TIFIA) $474 million loan for the project. Additionally, the New Jersey Economic Development Authority on behalf of NYNJ Link has issued $457 million series 2013 tax-exempt private activity bonds (PABs). Fitch Ratings and Standard Poor's Ratings assigned a 'BBB-' rating to the borrower in both cases.

NYNJ Link LLC will be contributing equity of $113 million or around 10 % of total project cost. Funding is completed by a US$150 million milestone payment during construction phase.

The project, based on availability payments, present low operational risk according to Fitch. The developer, formed by Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets (MIRA) (90% interest) and Kiewit Development Company (KDC) (10% interest), has extensive experience managing assets in the public private partnership space.

The contractor is formed by Kiewit Infrastructure Co. (70%), Weeks Marine Inc. (15%), and Massman Construction Co. (15%).

Construction is expected to take 50 months from financial close followed by a 35-year operating period. The project involves the design, construction, financing, operation, maintenance and rehabilitation of a replacement Goethals Bridge connecting Staten Island in New York City with Elizabeth in New Jersey as well as the demolition of the existing Goethals Bridge.

The project includes the construction of a new six-lane cable-stayed main span bridge, construction of new approach structures and realignments to link to the existing road network and the demolition and removal of the existing Goethals Bridge. While both the existing bridge and the replacement bridge will be tolled, the tolls are to be collected and retained by the PANYNJ and are not pledged as part of this financing.

This will be the authority's first new bridge built in 80 years, and it is expected to open late in 2016.

See Transaction Update by Standard & Poor's:

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