Louis Berger, a New Jersey-based infrastructure consulting firm, has hired former District of Columbia Department of Transportation director Leif Dormsjo to helm its infrastructure asset management practice.
The move comes as Louis Berger looks to get more actively involved in the public-private partnership space. Dormsjo, who will serve on the firm’s PPP council, pointed to Louis Berger’s focus on operation and maintenance activities, which he believes will fall increasingly to the private sector.
“We have the ability and track record of being a performer of those types of services,” Dormsjo told Infrastructure Investor. “That was a very unique opportunity from my perspective, to be able to add value by advising clients but then also performing services directly.”
Dormsjo will work out of the firm’s Washington, DC office. He was appointed director of DDOT in January 2015, joining the department shortly after the approval of the district’s PPP-enabling legislation. He oversaw the development of the district’s first PPP, a plan to upgrade 75,000 Washington streetlights that is now in the procurement stages. Dormsjo left his position at DDOT in August.
Prior to joining DDOT, Dormsjo worked for Maryland’s transportation department from 2007 to 2014, serving as deputy secretary. There, he worked on several PPPs including the $2 billion Purple Line light rail project following the state’s passage of its own PPP law in 2013.
Dormsjo said he has seen slow growth in the PPP market over his nearly 20-year career in the transportation sector.
“We have been talking about the need for a breakout year in P3s for the past 15 years,” he noted. “The P3 market has matured, but it is not by any means robust.”
Louis Berger has worked on projects including the $2.3 billion I-66 Outside the Beltway project in Virginia and the SH 130 toll road in Texas.