The Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority (WDBA) has selected three teams to submit proposals to design, build, finance, operate and maintain the Gordie Howe International Bridge.
The news marks another milestone in a process that began in 2012 when the Authority was established to procure what Canada’s ministry of transport describes as “the largest and most ambitious binational border infrastructure project along the Canada – US border.”
The three consortia invited to advance to the Request for Proposals (RFP) stage are Legacy Link Partners, comprising John Laing, Vinci Concessions and SNC Lavalin; Bridging North America, a consortium that teams ACS Infrastructure Canada with Fluor Canada; and CanAm Gateway Partners, comprising Fengate Capital Management, EllisDon Capital and Bechtel Development.
According to a statement released by WDBA, public and private-sector experts evaluated the initial six submissions based on the following criteria: respondents’ approach to partnering including experience with community benefit plans and engaging with indigenous people; design; construction, including making timely payments to sub-contractors; operation and maintenance; tolling; and financials.
The project, also known as the New International Trade Crossing, is being developed jointly by the Canadian government and the US state of Michigan since one point of entry is located in the US state of Michigan while the other is in Windsor, Ontario. It will receive funding from Canada, which has already committed C$631 million (€407.2 million; $441.5 million), as well as from the US government and through a public-private partnership (PPP; P3) agreement.
There are four major infrastructure components to the project – a six-lane bridge, border inspection points at both the Canadian and US points of entry, and an interchange connection to Interstate 75 in Michigan.
Established in 2012, WDBA, in addition to managing the procurement process, will also oversee the work of the PPP, manage the concession agreement and payments, and set and collect tolls.
According to Transport Canada, the country’s ministry of transport, the Detroit-Windsor crossing is the most important trade artery and the busiest commercial land border crossing in North America, handling 28 percent of Canada-US trade.