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Capital SouthEast Connector JPA - Connector Update
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Design-Build Legislation Could Accelerate Capital SouthEast Connector Construction and Reduce Cost
 
Mather, Calif., September 18, 2013 – Legislation approved last week in the State Capitol allowing the Capital SouthEast Connector to be built with a design-build procurement process could shave up to three years off of the project’s construction schedule and reduce costs by up to $40 million.
 
AB 401, which began as a bill allowing design-build authority on the I-405 freeway improvement project in Orange County, allows transportation agencies in counties with voter-approved transportation sales-tax programs to use design-build procurement for expressways and projects on the state highway system.  The legislation also allows the California Department of Transportation to use design-build procurement for up to 10 projects on the state highway system until 2024.
 
Following approval by the California Senate and Assembly, the bill now awaits Governor Jerry Brown’s signature before Oct. 13.
 
The bill was co-authored by Assembly Members Tom Daly (D- Anaheim), Ken Cooley (D-Rancho Cordova) and Eric Linder (R-Corona), along with Senator Lou Correa (D-Santa Ana).
 
“Approval of this bill reflects a clear direction by the Legislature that under fair rules the design-build tool can speed and strengthen capital investment in California’s future,” said Assembly Member Cooley.  “A key to our success was merging the efforts of design-build backers behind one bill.”
 
Under the design-build process a project’s design and construction is managed through one contract and can be overlapped.   The more traditional design-bid-build project delivery system separates the design and construction contracts.
 
“This is a hugely positive development for the Connector project.  With design-build authority, we can streamline the project’s delivery, which will save time and reduce our costs significantly,” said David Sander, chair of the Connector JPA board of directors.   “We’re especially appreciative of Assembly Member Cooley’s leadership and support on this issue of critical importance in moving the project forward.”
 
The 35-mile Connector will connect Interstate 5 south of Elk Grove to Highway 50 in El Dorado County just east of El Dorado Hills.  The project’s first phase, envisioned to be completed between 2018 and 2023 and estimated to cost $315 million, will include construction of a Connector “backbone” featuring four continuous lanes, expanded at-grade intersections at all major access points, a continuous path for pedestrians, bicyclists and equestrians, and right-of-way preservation for the project’s full build out including future interchanges.
 
The project’s second phase includes interchanges and additional lanes in some segments, and would be completed over the next 10 years to 20 years as additional funding is made available and demand necessitates additional improvements.
 
A recent economic impact study projected that construction of the Connector will create more than 5,400 new full-time jobs, $310 million in new labor income, $831 million in new regional economic output and more than $23 million in new indirect business tax revenue.  Over 20 years, the Connector is expected to create more than 25,000 total new direct and indirect jobs, and generate $2.5 billion in new economic output and $182 million in new indirect business tax revenue.
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