California qualifies three for Presidio Parkway PPP

ACS, a team of Hochtief and Meridiam, and Global Via are cleared to compete in the next round of bidding for the $1bn project, which will replace the southern access road to San Francisco’s famous Golden Gate Bridge. A request for proposals is expected to be issued later this month.

California has shortlisted three teams to compete for the $1 billion Presidio Parkway Project in San Francisco, the first public-private partnership (PPP) being delivered under its 2009 legislation enabling such projects.

The three teams are the Golden Gate Access Group, which includes Spanish infrastructure developer ACS as equity member; the Golden Link Partners, which includes German infrastructure developer Hochtief and European infrastructure fund manager Meridiam as equity members and Royal Presidio SF Partners, which includes Spanish transport infrastructure operator Global Via as equity member.

Presidio Parkway: moving

ACS has partnered with CH2M Hill as lead engineering firm and its construction subsidiary Dragados USA and CC Myers as lead contractors.

Hochtief and Meridiam partnered with HNTB Corporation and Flatiron West as lead engineering firm and lead contractor, respectively.

Global Via partnered with Parsons Transportation Group as lead engineering firm and FCC, Tutor Perini and Parsons Transportation Group as lead contractors.

The projects involves building a new southern access road to the city’s famous Golden Gate Bridge and then operating and maintaining it over the life of a 30-year concession in exchange for periodic payments from the government. The winning bidder will also have to design and finance the new road. The old road, Doyle Drive, is near the end of its useful life.

By delivering the project this way, as opposed to a more traditional method in which the government asks a contractor to simply design and build the project, the state is expecting to reap significant savings. California Business, Transportation and Housing Secretary Dale Bonner has previously told that a PPP delivery would save taxpayers $150 million over the life cycle of the concession, versus the traditional design-build approach.

Golden Gate, Golden Link and Royal Presidio were the only teams to submit responses to the state’s statement of qualifications for Presidio Parkway, according to a statement. These were due 11 March.

The next step for the PPP will be for the 13-member California Transportation Commission (CTC) to approve it at its next meeting, which is in May. The state’s Public Infrastructure Advisory Commission, a new government unit that advises the commission whether projects should or should not go forward as PPPs, recommended the Presidio Parkway for PPP delivery in February.

Mike Bowman, a spokesperson for Bonner’s agency, said a request for proposals for the projects is expected to be issued later this month. Any proposed agreement that is eventually accepted will have to be submitted to by the state’s legislature and the Public Infrastructure Advisory Commission for review, he added.

If it is approved by the CTC, the project will become the first to be delivered under a new PPP statute signed into law last year by California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. That statute allows the state to purse PPPs for infrastructure projects without limit to number or location.

Besides the Presidio Parkway, which has a capital cost of $954 million, according to the Public Infrastructure Advisory Commission, there are nine other projects in the state’s “emerging project pipeline” for PPPs. These include several bridge replacement and highway expansion projects. The pipeline has a total capital cost of $26 billion, according to the commission.