Volume 11, Issue 45 - Wednesday, November 13, 2019
Massachusetts - The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority's (MBTA) Fiscal Management and Control Board approved several resolutions to electrify most of its lines. Electrifying the lines could transform commuter rail transportation, allowing trains to stop in Braintree, Kingston, and Brockton every 15 minutes.

The MBTA has yet to secure funding or develop cost estimates, but similar proposals have been as high as $30 billion.

As part of the resolutions that were passed, a regional transformation office will be formed to oversee the project.

For the Providence/Stoughton and Fairmount lines, and for a section of the Newburyport/Rockport Line on the North Shore, preparations will begin immediately for a pilot program of electrified service.

The MBTA estimates it could take two to four years to acquire electric trains for the pilot program.

Key stations such as Braintree, Kingston, and Brockton would see 15-minute headways to and from Boston. In addition, a second set of tracks would need to be built along the South Shore's current infrastructure.

House lawmakers are preparing to debate new revenue options for public transit this fall.
Georgia - The Atlanta-Region Transit Link Authority (ATL Board) is set to adopt a metro Atlanta transit plan that includes $27.4 billion in transit improvements. However, most of the projects are unfunded, and there is no detailed construction timetable.

Included in the list of 192 projects are high-profile rail projects such as the $1.9 billion Clifton Corridor rail line, the Atlanta Beltline, and a commuter rail line to Clayton County. Also on the list are bus rapid-transit projects across the region, as well as Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) renovations and new transit centers.

Projects are in various stages of development and funding, but the plan is a prerequisite for much-needed state funding. The plan will develop over time, and it's expected that new projects will be added each year. Final adoption of the plan is expected in December.
New Haven line
Connecticut - Gov. Ned Lamont's proposed CT2030 transportation plan calls for $21 billion to fix some of the state's largest bottlenecks. Funding will come mostly from federal borrowing and tolls on bridges.

In total, $14 billion would be spent on roads, $6.2 billion would be spent on commuter rail, and $1 billion would be spent on bus transportation.

The largest investment, $1.4 billion, would go to repairing and replacing bridges along the Metro-North New Haven Line. The same line would get an additional $600 million for track geometry improvements.

Also included in the plan are projects to widen Interstate 95 in Bridgeport for $600 million and reconfigure the Interstate 91, Interstate 691 and Route 15 interchanges in Meriden for $276 million.

The plan directs another $276 million to relieve congestion on interstate 84 and 91 in Hartford. More than $175 million would be spent to reduce congestion on the Wilbur Cross Parkway. The project to replace Norwalk's Walk Bridge would get nearly $716 million.
Additionally, the plan emphasizes safety enhancements and technology upgrades throughout the state, including $475 million in upgrades to traffic signal technology.
Courtesy of CNS - Elliott Davis
Maryland - Lawmakers announced the Built to Learn Act, a $2.2 billion plan to build and renovate schools across Maryland. Funding is expected to come from the state's casinos and bonds from the Maryland Stadium Authority, and the $2.2 billion total will split into annual payments of $125 million.

The plan will be part of the 2020 legislative session. However, a commission already has been formed to study how to transform the state's public education system.

The Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education recommends phasing in increased funding over the next 10 fiscal years.
Ohio - The Ohio Department of Transportation's (ODOT) Transportation Review Advisory Council approved a list of 82 road construction projects for 2020. Over the next four years, a total of $1.1 billion will be used for projects across the state, including $400 million for new projects.

Several projects focus on the Columbus area, including adding express lanes to northbound Interstate 71 south of Downtown Columbus, and replacing the loop ramp from southbound I-270 to eastbound I-70. In the city of Delaware, Ohio, the railroad underpass for Route 36/37 will be widened.

Construction is set to begin in 2020 for the I-71 express lanes, and in 2022 for both the I-270 loop ramp replacement and the Route 36/37 railroad widening.

Other work includes $65 million for widening and interchange improvements along I-77, $79 million for widening I-475 and building a new interchange with Route 20A in Lucas County, and $38 million for widening I-75 between Paddock and Kemper in Hamilton County.
USDOT will help fund North Carolina flood resiliency projects.
Washington, D.C. - The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) announced on November 12 that it will distribute $900 million in grant funding to support infrastructure projects around the country.

USDOT will award 55 projects in 35 states with Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD) grants for surface transportation infrastructure projects that improve or build new roads, bridges, transit, trail, port, or intermodal transportation.

North Carolina's $685.12 million resiliency and innovative technology improvements project will receive $22.5 million in BUILD funding, and Colorado's $127.4 million military access, mobility, and safety improvement project was awarded $18.35 million.

Charleston, West Virginia's $265 million project to widen Interstate 64 will receive $20 million while Sky Harbor Airport's $239.06 million northside rail expansion in Phoenix was awarded $24 million.

USDOT will distribute $18 million to Canton, Ohio, and $12.5 million to Santa Fe, New Mexico, for highway projects that total $116.68 million and $115 million, respectively.

Beaumont, Texas, will get $18 million for its multimodal corridor expansion and improvement project estimated at $101.25 million. The first phase of the Central Iowa Water Trail dam mitigation and user access project received the maximum $25 million BUILD grants for its $31.25 million project. 

View the complete list of BUILD grant awardees.
Sterling Highway East End rendering
Alaska - The state's Department of Transportation (DOT) plans to begin a major road project in 2020 that includes rerouting the Sterling Highway and bypassing Cooper Landing. Transportation officials hope to have substantial construction completed by the end of next year.

Part of the Sterling Highway MP 45-60 Project, also known as the Cooper Landing Bypass Project, calls for installing a bridge that will run across Juneau Creek Canyon. The bridge will be Alaska's largest bridge and is estimated to cost a total of $111 million.

Phase 1 will address existing highway segments on the east and west sides of Cooper Landing. The goal of this phase is to add passing lanes, widen existing lanes and shoulders, and straighten portions of the road.

A clearing contract will be advertised for bid in Q2 of 2020. Work for the west side is anticipated to be advertised for bid in Q4 of 2020, while work for the east side will be advertised one year later. The road is expected to be open to traffic by 2025.

Phase 2 includes design and construction of the bridge in 2021. The state is seeking a construction manager or general contractor for this phase.

In total, the project is estimated to cost $375 million. Ninety percent of funding will be covered by the federal government, while the state will be responsible for the remaining 10 percent. A public meeting will be held in February 2020 for the Cooper Landing Bypass Project.
Rendering of Charlotte Mecklenburg Library
North Carolina - Charlotte Mecklenburg Library unveiled designs November 7 for a new $100 million, 115,000-square-foot library in uptown Charlotte.

The library is set to break ground on the six-level facility in 2021 and re-open in 2024 to replace the current library, which was built in 1989.

It will feature two outdoor terraces, an extensive active lobby, a vendor-operated cafe, advanced technology capabilities including two immersive theaters, collections spread throughout the building, flexible meeting space and rooms, a revamped Robinson-Spangler Carolina Room, a main entrance on North Tryon, and more.

The new Main Library project will be a public-private partnership (P3). Mecklenburg County has committed $65 million for the construction of new Main Library, and the associated build-out of an offsite support services center that will house non-customer facing activities. A local library foundation's capital campaign will raise $50 million for the new Main Library, plus an additional $20 million for library system needs. Total public and private funding for the project is $135 million.
Rendering of Kohl Center addition
Wisconsin - The University of Wisconsin plans to add on to its Kohl Center with a 42,000-square-foot, three-story addition aimed at supporting athlete services. The $42 million project is expected to begin construction in late 2020 or early 2021 and be completed in 2023.

Expanded facilities for academics, sports medicine, and strength and conditioning will be built over the southwest corner loading dock. Design concepts show a 9,000-square-foot area on the main concourse level for strength and conditioning as well as sports medicine and rehab. Classrooms and tutoring spaces for academic services will be on the mezzanine level.

The addition also includes new offices for men's and women's basketball teams on the upper level and the renovation of 22,000 square feet of existing space for expanding basketball locker rooms, moving the media room, and creating a new nutrition hub.
Rendering of Syracuse Tech Garden expansion
New York - Gov. Andrew Cuomo delivered two announcements on November 12 about the state's investment in developing unmanned aerial systems (UAS) technology.

In his announcement at Syracuse International Airport, Cuomo said New York will add two floors to the Syracuse Tech Garden business incubator that houses the GENIUS NY UAS competition. Empire State Development will contribute $12.5 million to the expansion that will provide more space for technology startups and a "drone zone" area for testing UAS indoors.

The increased visibility and streetscape will anchor the Syracuse City Center Innovation Hub, one of the cores of the city's Syracuse Surge development strategy. The facility also will serve as the gateway to the Innovation Alley in Syracuse.

Cuomo also heralded the completion of the 50-mile drone corridor between Syracuse and Rome. The nation's first corridor dedicated to unmanned aerial systems (UAS) testing will allow flights in real-world settings to provide data that could support routine commercial drone use.

The completion of the corridor advances the region's strategy to accelerate and support emerging uses of UAS in such industries as agriculture and forest management, transportation and logistics, media and film development, utilities and infrastructure and public safety.
   View our Government Contracting Pipeline and Texas Government Insider newsletter archives
Rendering of Muni Potrero station
California - The city of San Francisco plans to build housing over the Muni Potrero Bus Yard at 17th and Bryant streets. The plan includes 525 housing units, 50 percent of which would be affordable housing.
The city already is seeking private funding to pay for part of the project; however, a city subsidy may be required.

The 104-year-old bus yard currently houses 138 trolleybuses that serve roughly 100,000 riders every day, but the city plans to modernize its entire fleet by converting the trolleybuses into battery-electric buses. Aside from the proposed housing, which will be built on top of the yard, street-facing shops and stores are planned for the ground floor.

A developer will be selected by the end of 2020, and construction will begin by 2023.

The block is currently zoned for heights up to 65 feet, but the San Francisco Planning Department recommends rezoning for heights up to 150 feet to accommodate the project.
Leavitt Reservoir
Wyoming - The state Water Development Commission is pursuing two new reservoir projects with the creation of Alkali Creek Reservoir and the expansion of Leavitt Reservoir. Both projects have been approved by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM); however, additional approvals will be needed.

Alkali Creek Reservoir would cover 294 acres and provide late-season irrigation and recreation opportunities in the area. In addition to building the reservoir, a 6,218-foot-long bypass pipeline would be constructed and remain in place following construction of the reservoir. Total costs for the project are estimated at $35 million.

A joint decision was made between the BLM and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to expand Leavitt Reservoir from 45 acres to 203 acres, which will increase the lake's capacity to about 2.2 billion gallons of water. Part of this project calls for building an 80-foot tall, 1,800-foot long earthen dam with a 21-foot wide crest at an estimated cost of $41 million.

Funding comes from fees on extractive industries like coal and oil. Both projects could be started in 2021, and be finished and filled by 2023.

As part of the state's Ten in Ten infrastructure initiative, two other projects are also in progress: reconstruction of Middle Piney Reservoir, which will cost $12.2 million, and enlargement of Big Sandy Reservoir, which will cost $16.2 million. The Ten in Ten initiative aims to develop and preserve Wyoming's water resources, as each year the state sees about 3 million acre-feet flow away.
Rendering of Ashley River bike-pedestrian bridge
South Carolina - The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) recently awarded an $18.1-million grant to Charleston for a bicycle and pedestrian bridge that would be constructed just south of the U.S. Highway 17 drawbridges.

The standalone bridge will stretch 0.4 miles and connect to the existing 10.5-mile West Ashley Greenway and 2.5-mile West Ashley Bikeway.

It's anticipated that the bridge will be comparable to the 10-foot-wide Wonders Way bike-ped path on the Arthur Ravenal Jr. Bridge across the Cooper River.

In total, the project is estimated to cost $22 million. Most of the remaining funds will come from Charleston County.
California - The city of Carlsbad is soliciting statements of qualifications (SOQs) for digital transformation partners to assist the city in improving mobility, sustainability, internal systems, data-driven decision making, and civic engagement.

Several of the city's legacy systems need to be upgraded or replaced, such as its financial system that experiences outages. The city also wants to modernize its public safety, water, and wastewater services.

Given the need to upgrade, replace or acquire core systems, the City is seeking a qualified partner or partners with experience that can provide a strategic roadmap and implementation to address citywide digital transformation.

Procurement documents state that city officials want a partner that can understand the art of the possible, examine the city's existing processes and systems, propose changes to processes and systems as a part of the upgrade and adoption of digital products, all of which culminates in advancing the city beyond its existing conditions.

Deadline to submit SOQs is 2 p.m. December 18.
Join more than 850 public representatives, design-build leaders, and P3 experts at the P3 Government Conference for two days of transportation, water, energy, and social infrastructure project delivery. 

The conference is scheduled from December 3-4 at the Marriott Marquis Washington, D.C.

The P3 Government Conference invites local, state, and federal project representatives evaluating upgrades and new developments for two days of P3 education and networking.

This year's program provides the essential tools and know-how to successfully plan, deliver, and operate P3 projects of all sizes.

Please visit the conference website and register today!

New York - The New York State Education Department board of regents appointed Shannon Tahoe as acting education commissioner and president of the University of the State of New York, effective November 16. Tahoe is the department's former acting chief counsel.

North Dakota - The state of North Dakota named Sean Wiese as the team lead of its new Cyber Operations Center (CyOC). Wiese previously served as North Dakota's chief information security officer (CISO). To fill his position, the state's Information Technology Office selected Kevin Ford as its new CISO, effective November 20. Ford most recently served with a cybersecurity company in Denver.

Colorado - Boulder County commissioners promoted Jana Petersen to be the county's first county administrator, effective January 14, 2020. Petersen currently serves as the county's director of administrative services. She previously worked as an administrative deputy to the Board of County Commissioners.

Maryland - The University System of Maryland (USM) board of regents named the president of its Baltimore campus, Dr. Jay Perman, as USM chancellor on November 8. He will succeed Robert Caret in summer 2020. Perman has served as University of Maryland, Baltimore president since 2010.

Louisiana - The Port of Lake Charles board of commissioners selected Richert Self as the port's new executive director. He will take over for Bill Rase in June 2020. Self currently serves as the port's deputy executive director. He previously served as the port's director of administration and finance.
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