Presidio Parkway Project Named "Best Real Estate Deal of the Year" by San Francisco Business Times

Nossaman would like to congratulate the California Department of Transportation and the San Francisco County Transportation Authority for the Presidio Parkway Project's recognition as the "Best Real Estate Deal of the Year" in the category of Infrastructure/Public-Private Partnership by the San Francisco Business Times.  Winners were announced at the publication's annual awards dinner in San Francisco on March 20, 2013.

This recognition is the latest in a number of industry awards honoring the Presidio Parkway Project, which is the first transportation project to be procured under California's 2009 PPP statute, and only the fourth highway project in the United States developed using an availability payment structure.  A Nossaman team, led by Barney Allison, advised Caltrans on the $1.1 billion deal, which reached financial close on June 14, 2012.
 

Recognition for USA Infrastructure Continues to Grow on Global Stage

As the 2013 award season heats up for 2012 successes around the world, the juries are increasingly finding the US market hard to ignore. Infrastructure Journal and PPP Bulletin International, the two London-based media organizations that annually recognize top projects and industry organizations worldwide, have each announced their finalists for this year's best transportation transactions and firms. Focusing on public-private partnership projects as opposed to those mega-projects which are the subject of major design-build contracts, these organizations nevertheless both found much to honor during a standout period.

Infrastructure Journal has announced that the Virginia Department of Transportation's Downtown Tunnel/Midtown Tunnel/MLK Extension Project ("Midtown Tunnel") is one of four finalists for its Global Transport Deal of the Year, the third time in four years IJ has so recognized US projects, starting with the Texas Department of Transportation's North Tarrant Express, named the Global Transport Project of 2009 and finalist for the overall Global Infrastructure Project of that year; and the Florida Department of Transportation's I-595 Project, also a finalist for the 2009 Global Transport Project. For this year's awards, the publication reviewed more than 600 submissions and will announce the winner on April 17, 2013.

PPP Bulletin International has announced that the California Department of Transportation's Presidio Parkway Project, the Midtown Tunnel and VDOT's I-95 Express Lanes project are all among the finalists for its Best Transport Project of the Year. The publication will announce the winner on May 23, 2013.

We congratulate VDOT, Caltrans and their private partners for this well-deserved recognition.

From One End of the US to the Other, Project Finance Magazine Recognizes P3 Projects as Deals of the Year

On March 7, Project Finance Magazine held its annual “Project Finance Americas Deals of the Year” awards dinner in New York City.  The awards – which started 14 years ago – are for innovation, deal repeatability, best practice, problem solving, value for money and speed of delivery in the financing of infrastructure projects.  Two public-private partnership projects – one on the East coast and one on the West coast – received honors at this year’s dinner.     

The award for 2012 North America Toll Road Deal of the Year was given to the Midtown Tunnel project located in the Hampton Roads region of Virginia.  The $2.1 billion toll concession project, which reached financial close in April 2012, is comprised of a new two-lane tunnel adjacent to the existing Midtown Tunnel, the maintenance and safety improvements to the existing Midtown and Downtown Tunnels, and an extension of the Martin Luther King Freeway to Interstate 264.  The project sponsor was Elizabeth River Crossings Opco LLC, a consortium led by Macquarie and Skanska ID.  The awarding authority was the Virginia Department of Transportation.  Nossaman served as legal advisor to VDOT.   

The award for 2012 North America Public Private Partnership Deal of the Year was given to the Presidio Parkway project located in San Francisco, California.  The $1.1 billion project was the first transportation project in California to be delivered using the state’s recently enacted P3 statute and only the third highway project in the United States developed through an availability payment structure.  The project sponsor was Golden Link Concessionaire, LLC, a consortium led by Hochtief PPP Solutions North America and Meridiam Infrastructure North America.  The awarding authorities were the California Department of Transportation and the San Francisco County Transportation Authority.  Nossaman served as legal advisor to Caltrans.  

Attendees at the awards dinner included: Dale Bonner, formerly the Secretary of the Business, Transportation and Housing Agency for the State of California; Sean Connaughton, Secretary of Transportation for the Commonwealth of Virginia; Dusty Holcombe, Deputy Director for the Virginia Office of Public Private Partnerships; and Ryan Pedraza, Program Manager for the Virginia Office of Public Private Partnerships.

Nossaman would like to extend its congratulations to VDOT, Caltrans and the San Francisco County Transportation Authority for their achievements, and to all those who made these awards possible.   

DBIA Announces the 2013 Design-Build in Transportation Leadership Awards

The Design-Build Institute of America announced today the 2013 Design-Build in Transportation Awards, which will be presented on March 19, 2013 at the 2013 Design-Build in Transportation Conference in Orlando, Florida.

The California Department of Transportation was named 2013 Transportation Owner Agency of the Year.  Caltrans has made great strides with design-build recently through its Design-Build Demonstration Program.  Caltrans also reached financial close this year on its high profile Presidio Parkway project, which will use the design-build-finance-operate and maintain, or availability payment, delivery method.

Ananth Prasad, the Florida Secretary of Transportation, will be honored with the 2013 Transportation Owner Award.  Mr. Prasad is an advocate for alternative delivery methods, and in 2012 alone FDOT awarded over 59 design-build contracts.  Florida is also a leader in innovative financing of transportation projects, with both the Port of Miami Tunnel and the I-595 Express Lanes being delivered as availability payment projects.

Roger A. Johnson is another individual awarded the 2013 Transportation Award.  He is the Deputy Director of Los Angeles World Airports.  He is currently overseeing two design-build projects valued at over $570 million at Los Angeles International Airport.  LAWA is planning an additional $1 billion worth of design-build projects as part of its modernization of the airport.

Finally, John Bourne of HNTB will be presented with the 2013 Transportation Practitioner Award.  Mr. Bourne was formerly the Deputy Director and then Director of the Utah Department of Transportation’s I-15 reconstruction program, a $1.6 billion design-build project.  Since joining HNTB he has been active in working with departments of transportation in states such as Minnesota, Texas, and Utah.  He recently served as HNTB’s project manager on the I-15 CORE project, a $1.1 billion fixed price/best design procurement.

The announcement can be found on the DBIA website.

20th Annual CCPPP Conference Looks to the U.S.

The 20th annual conference of The Canadian Council of Public-Private Partnerships (CCPPP) was held in Toronto on November 26-27, 2012.  Drawing industry leaders from within and outside of Canada, the conference this year reflected the maturity of the Canadian market and the interest of P3 players looking beyond its borders for future opportunities, particularly participating in the growing U.S. P3 market. 

One of the keynote speakers was Michigan Governor Rick Snyder, who championed the proposed $3.5 billion Detroit-Windsor bridge and expressed appreciation for Canada’s leadership on the proposed project and in the P3 sector generally.  With the Canadian government indicating that it will take the lead in procuring and financing the project, Governor Snyder stated that he hopes to see the project come to market within the next couple of years.

A well-attended session discussed recently closed US P3 projects:  California’s Presidio Parkway Project (awarded to a Hochtief consortium in 2011); Florida’s I-595 Project (awarded to an ACS consortium in 2009); and Denver’s Eagle Project (awarded to a Fluor consortium in 2010).  The panelists discussed the complexity of bringing these projects to financial close and US-specific issues.

Many attendees felt that, while the Canadian P3 market continues to generate a steady pipeline of P3 projects, the US infrastructure market is well-poised to attract many of the seasoned Canadian P3 players.  SNC-Lavalin, an experienced Canadian P3 developer, was recently shortlisted and submitted a bid on the East End Crossing Project.  Other seasoned Canadian P3 participants, such as Bilfinger Berger and Hochtief, were also members of shortlisted consortia for the project, and the Presidio Parkway Project was awarded to Hochtief.  Canadian P3 players have also expressed interest in potential upcoming P3 projects such as Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s Accelerated Regional Transportation Improvements Project and the Travis Country Courthouse project in Texas. 

ARTBA Announces Recipients of 2012 P3 Awards

On October 10 through 12, the American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) held their 24th Annual Public-Private Partnerships in Transportation Conference in Washington, DC.  Each year during this conference, the ARTBA P3 Division honors two individuals, one public sector and one private sector, for their exemplary contributions to the transportation industry. 

This year we are proud to announce that Nossaman's Geoff Yarema was named "P3 Private Sector Entrepreneur of the Year."  Geoff is the first two-time recipient of this award, having received the award in 2003.  Geoff was recognized for his outstanding contributions to the advancement of P3s within the transportation construction industry, particularly for his involvement in the National Surface Transportation Infrastructure Financing Commission and the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21), a measure to reauthorize transportation funding through the end of 2014.

Also, Tony Kinn of Virginia’s Office of Transportation Public-Private Partnerships (OTP3) was named “P3 Public Sector Entrepreneur of the Year.”  Appointed as the director of OTP3 in 2011, Tony is in charge of one of the largest P3 transportation programs in the United States.  This year, he oversaw the financial closing of two major Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) P3 projects, including the Midtown Tunnel Project in April.  A Nossaman team, led by Simon Santiago, advised VDOT on the $2.1 billion Midtown Tunnel Project, which is comprised of a new two-lane tunnel adjacent to the existing Midtown Tunnel, the maintenance and safety improvements to the existing Midtown and Downtown Tunnels, and an extension of the MLK Freeway to Interstate 264.  Tony told the conference attendees that his goal is to have OTP3 and VDOT remain in the forefront of closing deals and we wish him continued success in this endeavor.   

In addition to the individual awards, each year ARTBA recognizes projects for the innovation that they brought to the process of public-private partnerships in the United States.  We would like to congratulate the California Department of Transportation and the San Francisco County Transportation Authority for the Presidio Parkway Project’s recognition as "P3 Project of the Year."  A Nossaman team, led by Barney Allison, advised Caltrans on the $1.1 billion deal, which will be the first transportation P3 in California under the recently enacted P3 statute, Streets and Highways Code section 143, and only the third highway project in the United States developed through an availability payment structure.  

Established in 1902, ARTBA is the oldest national transportation construction-related association.  Their primary goal is to aggressively grow and protect transportation infrastructure investment to meet the public and business demand for safe and efficient travel.
 

California Supreme Court Allows Presidio Parkway to Proceed as P3

On November 16, challenges to the legality of the Presidio Parkway public-private partnership (P3) contract ended with a one sentence order from the California Supreme Court: “The petition for review is denied.”  Professional Engineers in California Government (PECG), the union representing Caltrans engineers, had asked the Supreme Court to review the Aug. 8, 2011, decision of the California Court of Appeal in San Francisco (First District), which unanimously held that Phase 2 of the Presidio Parkway project can move forward as a P3.  As a result, the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) and the San Francisco County Transportation Authority (SFCTA) will continue with Phase 2.  The project will replace the old and outmoded approach to the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco.  The Supreme Court’s action denying the petition comes a year after PECG filed the lawsuit in the trial court.

When the California Transportation Commission considered whether to approve use of a P3 for the project under Streets and Highways Code section 143, the California Legislative Analyst Office (LAO), and the California Attorney General’s office (AG) as counsel to the Commission, gave written opinions concluding that the project was not authorized.  Caltrans’ general counsel, along with Nossaman acting as P3 legal advisor to Caltrans, took a contrary position.  Section 143, adopted in 2009, broadens the types of P3 projects authorized in California.  The Commission approved the project for a P3, while noting the unresolved legal issue.

PECG sued Caltrans and the SFCTA to stop Phase 2 of the project, arguing, like the LAO and AG had earlier, that the project was not authorized by section 143.  The courts rejected PECG’s argument that, under section 143, Caltrans’ internal personnel must perform all the preliminary planning and design services, as opposed to being responsible only for seeing them done correctly.  The courts also rejected the argument that P3 efforts under California law must be confined to toll projects, holding that the legislation authorized much broader use of innovative financing, in this case an availability payment.  Finally, the courts also held that the project was properly characterized as supplemental to existing facilities, as required by section 143.

The Presidio Parkway Project is the first project to reach award under California’s new P3 statute.  The decision of the courts—and now the finality—is important beyond the Presidio Parkway Project.  This should ease the way to use P3s under section 143 for other projects, and also provide helpful precedent for design build projects authorized under parallel legislation passed at the same time.

At the beginning of 2011, Caltrans, in cooperation with SFCTA, signed a contract for the project to Golden Link Concessionaire, LLC, a consortium led by Hochtief  PPP Solutions North America and Meridiam Infrastructure North America. 

Nossaman represented SFCTA in the litigation and advised Caltrans during the P3 procurement.  Caltrans was represented in the litigation by its own department counsel.

For more about the Presidio Parkway Project and section 143, see Appeals Court Rules Presidio Parkway Can Move Forward as P3, Presidio Parkway Project Awarded, Preferred Proposer Selected for Presidio Parkway Project, Final RFP for the Presidio Parkway Project Released, Presidio Parkway Reaches Two Important Milestones, and Presidio Parkway Project RFQ Issued.