DOTD Issues Notice of Intent to Solicit Design Builder(s) for Two Projects
Tuesday, March 27, 2018 at 1:00:26 PM
Today, Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development Secretary Shawn D. Wilson, Ph.D., announced plans to move forward with an unprecedented request for letters of interest for two design-build projects simultaneously. In an effort to be more efficient and ensure these projects are ready for construction at the earliest possible time, DOTD is combining the qualification phases for the two projects.

Earlier today, DOTD began the process by issuing a Notice of Intent (NOI) seeking interested design-build firms. The NOI can be viewed on DOTD’s website.

“There has been an outcry from the public for these projects and we are employing innovative means to deliver,” Wilson said. “These projects, as well as others, would have been funded under the broadly supported gas tax proposal that the legislature did not pass last year. We can no longer wait while we lose our competitive edge. We are forced to use GARVEE Bonds, a tool used by 30 other states to pay for major improvements.”

Federal Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicle Bonds (GARVEE Bonds) allow the state to repay the debt with federal highway funds the state receives each year.

With the support of Governor John Bel Edwards, DOTD pursued approval of the Louisiana Joint Transportation Committee to utilize the design-build contracting process, which can expedite project delivery by combing the design and construction phases. This approach also encourages private sector innovation. The recommendation to advertise and solicit for the two projects was approved on Jan. 31, 2018.

One project will improve the Loyola Drive interchange access from I-10 to the new terminal at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport which is currently scheduled to open in February 2019. The other project will provide direct access from the I-20/I-220 interchange into Barksdale Air Force Base, a globally significant military installation. The estimates for the projects range from $80 to $125 million each.

With a $13.9 billion backlog, DOTD, under this administration, will continue to pursue visionary means of funding and contracting to demonstrate what can be accomplished through innovation and working with our federal partners. This includes competing for discretionary funding and creating an office of innovative procurement to facilitate this more focused approach on innovation and public private partnership practices.