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Kentucky seeks teams to build new Ohio River bridge, modernize Kennedy Interchange in downtown Louisville

Notice of intent is first step to procurement; pre-bid meeting for contractors set for March 1

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Jan. 30, 2012) –Kentucky is seeking teams of contractors to design and build a new downtown Louisville bridge, a modernized downtown interchange and improved I-65 connections to Southern Indiana, Transportation Cabinet Secretary Mike Hancock announced today.

The notice of intent is the first step to procurement of Kentucky’s half of the Louisville-Southern Indiana Ohio River Bridges Project, a bi-state partnership with the State of Indiana to build two new bridges and enhance interstate connections that will improve safety, congestion and mobility for the region.

Contractor teams from around the region, nation and world are invited to attend a pre-bid meeting beginning at 10 a.m. on Thursday, March 1, at the Kentucky International Convention Center in Louisville. Information is available online at transportation.ky.gov/Construction-Procurement/Pages/default.aspx.

“We are determined to select a proven team of professionals that will bring innovative approaches to reduce costs, speed construction and deliver a reliable transportation system that will serve citizens of Kentucky and Indiana for decades to come,” Secretary Hancock said.

Under a procurement plan developed by Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear and Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels, the two states are working together to begin construction by year’s end on the estimated $2.6 billion Ohio River Bridges Project.

The downtown portion of the project, which is Kentucky’s responsibility, has an estimated price tag of $1.3 billion – half of the project’s total cost. Indiana is leading the way on procurement and construction of the other half, the new East End bridge and roadway connections that will link the Gene Snyder Expressway in Louisville with the Lee Hamilton Expressway in Southern Indiana.

The two states are working with the Louisville and Southern Indiana Bridges Authority to finalize a plan to finance the overall project using a combination of traditional transportation dollars and revenues from tolls collected on the new and improved bridges.

The new Six-Year Highway Plan that Gov. Beshear has recommended to the Kentucky General Assembly includes $50 million a year in traditional funding as well as sales of federally backed GARVEE bonds and toll revenue bonds to help finance the downtown portion of the project. The first two years of funding are part of Beshear’s proposed biennial budget under consideration by the General Assembly.

Secretary Hancock said the selection of a contracting team will be based on a two-step “best value process.” First, KYTC will issue a Request for Qualifications (RFQ). Responses will be evaluated to establish a short-list of three contractor teams. Second, those selected teams will be invited to submit proposals in response to a Request for Proposals (RFP).

Proposals will be evaluated using a formula that will consider four major factors:

• Cost;

• Schedule;

• Technical approach; and

• An inclusion plan for Disadvantage Business Enterprises (DBEs), such as minority- and women-owned businesses.

KYTC will select a contractor team later this year with the goal of awarding a contract by October. The anticipated completion date is June 2018.