In March 2006, American Bridges/Fluor Enterprises, a Joint Venture, presented a $1.43 billion bid for the self-anchored suspension (SAS) portion of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. The contract was awarded the folllowing month.
Work on the new east span's most iconic element, the single tower, 2,047-foot-long SAS span, continues to move ahead. The SAS is unlike any other bridge in the world. Despite issues that delayed the delivery of the initial deck sections, staff in China collaborated with the prime contractor and fabricator to overcome those hurdles and sent the first deck sections sailing across the Pacific in December 2009. Those first 12 deck sections arrived in the Bay Area in just 22 days. By the end of 2009, nearly 55 percent of the permanent SAS sections were fabricated and out of the workshops. Nearly 53 percent of the steel crossbeams were fabricated, and 68 percent of the tower sections were complete. Almost all work on the temporary steel support structures for the SAS was completed by the end of the 2009.
In July 2010, the final segment of the new east span began to take shape with the placement of the first tower leg for the single tower that will eventually soar 525 feet above the foundations.
In 2009, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed Senate Bill X2 4, which provided legislative authority for public private partnership agreements for the development of transportation infrastructure through 2017. This method of financing will provide significant new capital investment while improving and expanding our transportation infrastructure. In February 2010, the California Transportation Commission approved the Presidio Parkway project under this authority. It is anticipated that the project will achieve contract execution by the end of December 2010.
The Presidio Parkway project is intended to replace the existing 73-year-old south access to the Golden Gate Bridge. The entire project is expected to cost approximately $929 million and consist of eight separate contracts. Contracts one through four started in November 2009. These projects will improve that seismic safety. The public private partnership project will construct contracts five through eight ($473 million) and finance the future operations and maintenance of the entire project.
In 2009, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed Senate Bill X2 4, which provided legislative authority for a design-build demonstration program. This strategy allows a project to begin construction earlier, since one section of the project can be built while the next section is being designed. This process maximizes available labor, materials and resources. The bill allowed for 10 projects to be piloted by the state and five projects to be piloted by local agencies. The demonstration program will allow the projects to open to traffic an average of 12 months early. As of August 2010, the California Transportation Commission has approved six state projects in Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Fresno, San Mateo, and Madera counties and one local project in Riverside County.
Caltrans continues to feature contract bidding improvements that promote business connectivity between smaller contractors and larger contractors. These improvements stimulate economic development and improve bidding contractors' access to information while meeting the intent of the Governor’s Executive Order 02-06.
Caltrans has transitioned to a paperless bid document distribution system (E Ad) to increase efficiency and reduce costs. Paperless bid documents eliminate excess printing costs and storage issues for unused project documents.
For the past five years, the Caltrans director has entered into contracts with each of Caltrans’ 12 district directors to ensure the delivery of projects ready to go to construction within the fiscal year. The department first began the contracts for delivery in fiscal year 2005-06. The contracts for delivery include projects designed by Caltrans, that are committed to achieve the “ready to list” milestone, or reached the point where Caltrans may advertise the project to solicit bids from contractors.
From fiscal year 2005-06 to 2009-10, Caltrans delivered 99.8 percent of the 1,394 projects included in the contracts for delivery valued at nearly $15 billion. In FY 2009-10, Caltrans delivered 304 projects, worth $2.8 billion, on time. More than 64 percent (892 of the 1,394) of the contract for delivery projects achieved the ready to list milestone ahead of schedule.
These contracts for delivery have represented only a portion of the work required to deliver projects. They have focused on specific projects where the completion of activities will get those projects ready to move to construction within the fiscal year. However, most projects require several years to get through the environmental, design, right-of-way procurement and construction processes. In addition to focusing on those projects that can be made ready for construction within the fiscal year, the contracts for delivery for FY 2010-11 will be modified to include project delivery milestones for all phases of all projects being worked on.
Since 2006, the department has consistently managed from $9.4-$10.4 billion in contracts to generate jobs and improve the state’s infrastructure. At the end of the 2009-10 fiscal year, Caltrans had nearly 700 ongoing construction contracts valued at nearly $9.6 billion statewide.