Volume 9, Issue 1 - January 4, 2017
Mary Scott Nabers, President/CEO, Strategic Partnerships, Inc.
Seems everyone is talking about infrastructure and all eyes are on Washington to see if the new president is going to launch a huge infrastructure reform. But, there is heated discussion also about a different type of infrastructure - city streets. The winds of change are creating very interesting trends...ones that are definitely worth watching.

Bridges and highways continue to cry out for attention, but many municipal leaders are focusing most of their immediate efforts on city streets. Don't be confused though - their focus is on particular types of city streets - ones that fit the guidelines of "complete streets."

These new urban streets are different and they almost always include bike lanes, improved sidewalks and other amenities. The bike lanes are not the types one might consider the norm. In a complete street design, bike lanes are usually separated from automobile traffic by barriers - either concrete or plant barriers. Many transportation enthusiasts believe bike lanes only add to and/or increase traffic congestion but the trend toward bike lanes is strong indeed. Protected bike lanes are now found in 24 states and 53 U.S. cities.

In This Issue
Strategic Partnerships, Inc. provides opportunity
identification for all 50 states.

Click here for more information.
Government Contracting Pipeline Archives
View our other newsletter, Texas Government Insider

Increases in home construction, nonresidential building and government construction are keeping U.S. builders busy.


Gains in all three categories have reached their highest annual rate in more than a decade, reaching $1.18 trillion.


According to the U.S. Department of Commerce, construction spending rose 0.9 percent in November after a 0.6 percent increase in October. For November, the 0.8 percent advance in government projects reflected a 3.1 percent rise in spending at the federal level and a 0.6 increase in construction by state and local governments. Economists believe construction will continue to show gains in 2017.


President-elect Donald Trump has vowed to increase spending on projects to repair and replace the country's aging infrastructure. Following the election of Trump, financial markets sent stock prices to record highs. Construction projects are underway all across the country.


In Utah, work has begun on a new 4,000-bed, $550 million state prison in Salt Lake City. The cost to build two roads and lines for water, sewer, gas, fiber-optic cables and lighting will cost $90 million. Salt Lake City will cover $43 million and the remaining $47 million will come from the state to pay for the prison's needed infrastructure.


view more

Martin Klepper
Martin Klepper has been named executive director of the U.S. Department of Transportation's new Build America Bureau..  Klepper is a senior partner in an international law firm known for developing, financing, acquiring and selling transportation, energy and other large infrastructure projects.


"We are pleased to have someone with Martin's significant experience and expertise at the helm of the Bureau," said Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. "Under his leadership, the Bureau will be a driving force in financing transportation projects across the country."


The bureau was created to streamline access to federal credit and grant opportunities and provide technical assistance with project planning, financing, delivery and monitoring. The bureau also helps state and local governments develop and finance public-private partnership (P3/PPP) transactions for transportation facilities.


The Build America Bureau combines the following DOT programs: the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA), the Railroad Rehabilitation & Improvement Financing (RRIF), the private activity bond (PAB) program, the Outreach and Project Development functions of the BATIC and the Fostering Advancements in Shipping and Transportation for the Long-term Achievement of National Efficiencies (FASTLANE) grant program.

Upcoming contracting opportunities

The latest version of Louisiana's $50 billion coastal protection and restoration master plan has been released by the state's Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority. The new version of the 50-year plan includes building floodgates at the Chef Menteur and Rigolets passes at a cost of $2.4 billion. Levees and floodwalls would be built along U.S. 90 as well as other areas along the coastline. In the first 10 years, a $876.7 million project to divert freshwater from the Mississippi River is planned in St. James Parish. The authority's board will vote on the master plan in the spring before it moves to the state legislature.


California officials have released a WaterFix Final Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement to improve a federal and state water system that supplies water to 25 million people and irrigates around 3 million acres of farmland. The plan proposes that intake valves near Courtland would direct water flow through a pair of 35-mile-long pipelines. The $15.7 billion twin tunnels project would protect water supplies if an earthquake demolished delta levees. It would also prevent saltwater invasion as sea levels rise and protect the delta's ecosystem. The next step for the state is to complete a biological opinion report, which must be agreed upon by water districts and property owners. Work on the twin tunnels is projected to begin in 2018. Click here for the report.


Florida Department of Transportation officials plan to spend more than $1 billion over five years to add express lanes to the Sawgrass Expressway and Florida's Turnpike. Projects are planned in Broward, Palm Beach and Miami-Dade counties. Officials said the projects are designed to relieve traffic congestion, provide travel options, accommodate future growth and enhance emergency evacuation routes. Construction will begin as early as July. 


Illinois Tollway officials authorized $1.7 billion for infrastructure as part of the agency's 2017 budget. Funding includes $374.5 million for the Illinois Route 390 Tollway and to plan for the north-south I-490 Tollway. The toll roads would connect and provide western access to O'Hare International Airport. Another $587 million is budgeted for additional capital projects, including $165.3 million for the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway and $56.5 million for the planning and design on the reconstruction of the Central Tri-State Tollway.


Metro Transit will be seeking bids in the spring for the construction of a 14.5-mile Southwest light-rail line connecting Minneapolis to Eden Prairie, Minn. The Federal Transit Administration approved the $1.9 billion line, which will make stops along the route in St. Louis Park, Hopkins and Minnetonka. Bids will begin for signaling, communications system and electrical power in the spring and for the operations and maintenance facility by the middle of 2017. The Met Council is set to award contracts by June with private utility relocations occurring in the spring. The rail line is expected to begin passenger service in 2021.


St. Louis, Mo., officials are planning a $138 million renovation of a downtown arena in partnership with the St. Louis Blues. The city intends to fund $67.5 million for the first phase of the project, which would include new seating, a new scoreboard, sound system and lighting upgrades, renovated locker rooms, renovated concessions stands and new administrative offices. Officials plan to request $70.5 million from the state for a second phase. Aldermen plan to consider a proposal for the city's portion of the project next week.


A $75 million grant was awarded to the Utah Transit Authority to build a bus line that should help reduce traffic congestion and air pollution in the Wasatch Front region. The grant, provided by the U.S. Department of Transportation, will cover half of the cost of the 10.5-mile Provo-Orem BRT Line. The bus rapid transit line will run from the Orem Transit Center to downtown Provo and will include stops at Utah Valley University, Brigham Young University and the Provo Central Station.


Seattle transit authority officials are planning four transit projects utilizing a new infrastructure financing tool. The Central Puget Sound Regional Transit Authority and the Build America Bureau signed a Master Credit Agreement (MCA), which will help expedite multiple loan requests under a single agreement between the local transit authority and federal government. The first of the projects, the Northgate Link Extension, will be funded in part with a $615.3 million loan under the MCA.  The total project budget is $1.9 billion. It will connect the Northgate, Roosevelt and U District neighborhoods to downtown Seattle and the airport.


Photo by Etombari CC BY-SA 3.0
Newport News, Va., officials announced $3.6 million in state and federal funding for five transportation projects. A $1.24 million grant from the Virginia Department of Transportation's Smart Scale program will be used for a $8.2 million bridge replacement project at Lake Maury. A signal improvement project will receive $1.2 million. A complete streets project on Washington Avenue will receive a $400,000 grant and a Warwick Boulevard/Harpersville Road intersection project will receive $775,000.


Transportation authority officials in Jacksonville, Fla., are planning a $43.1 million transportation center for the city's bus and rail systems as well as intercity bus services. The center will include 40,000 square feet for the authority's administrative offices. The project is scheduled to begin construction in 2017 and be complete by November 2019.

News about public-private partnerships (P3s)

Birmingham, Ala., Mayor William Bell recently presented a $40 million plan to move the city's police and fire headquarters, as well as the municipal court, to a public safety municipal complex in Ensley. The project calls for rehabilitating the 87-year-old Ramsay McCormack building for use by the municipal court and new buildings for police and fire departments. The plan also includes a public-private partnership (P3/PPP) to build a mixed-use development adjacent to the public safety complex. The P3 would create residential, retail and office space. A park and parking garage are also part of the project. City Council members expect to review a plan for the complex in January.


Vermont officials are reviewing a study by the Union of Concerned Scientists and the Northeast Solar Energy Market detailing ways the state can use public-private partnerships (P3/PPP) to finance clean energy projects. The study concludes Vermont could support $148 million in clean energy projects utilizing $7 million in public financing. The program, as specified by the group, could, create 50 megawatts of new solar and wind power projects and reduce the state's carbon emissions by more than 111,500 tons per year.


Wake County, N.C., officials are partnering with the YMCA to build an elementary school in Southeast Raleigh. Commissioners approved a request from the county school system to reallocate $1 million for the new 500-student school on a YMCA-owned site. The project is meant to revitalize a low-income area of the county. Through a public-private partnership (P3/PPP) agreement, the YMCA will build the school and the school district will lease space in the facility. The YMCA will also provide students with the use of a gymnasium and swimming pool.


A public-private partnership (P3/PPP) between an Omaha-based energy company, Central Community College in Hastings, Neb., and a local utility provider has generated a $4 million tool for students to learn from starting in the fall 2017 semester. The 1.7-megawatt General Electric turbine will be part of the college's alternative energy program. The Hastings Board of Public Works approved a pair of contracts for the project in August 2016. One contract allows the energy company to build, own and operate the turbine and sell the carbon-free energy to the local utility provider. A second contract allows CCC to use a portion of the environmental attributes generated by the project.


The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey's Goethals Bridge, the agency's first use of public-private partnership (P3/PPP) on a bridge project, is set to open in 2018. Construction began in 2014 on the $1.5 billion project to replace a 90-year-old bridge over the Arthur Kill strait that links Interstate 278 between Staten Island and Elizabeth, N.J. Funding includes $460 million in tax-exempt Private Activity Bonds, a $495-million TIFIA loan and $110 million in private equity from the concessionaire. The port authority will provide $150 million in milestone payments.

About Government Contracting Pipeline

Note to media: Need expert commentary on procurement issues relating to public-sector entities, public-private partnerships (PPPs/P3s), state agencies or decision-makers? Give us a call at (512) 531-3900, and we'll arrange an interview for you with one of our experts.

Permission to reproduce, reprint: This newsletter may be reproduced, and all the articles within may be reproduced without permission when credit is given to the author (if listed) and Government Contracting Pipeline, a publication of Strategic Partnerships, Inc., and the company website, www.spartnerships.com is listed.
Strategic Partnerships, Inc., 901 S. Mopac Expressway, Ste. 1-100, Austin, TX 78746
Sent by editor@spartnerships.com in collaboration with
Constant Contact