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Construction

Construction Program Guide

Construction Contracting Method

Title 23 U.S.C. 112 requires the use of competitive bidding for Federal-aid highway construction contracts unless ". . . the State transportation department demonstrates, to the satisfaction of the Secretary, that some other method is more cost effective or that an emergency exists."

For Federal-aid highway construction contracts, contracting agencies have the following options:

  • Competitive bidding with award to the lowest responsive and responsible bidder (23 C.F.R. 635, Subpart A)
  • Design-build project delivery (23 C.F.R. 636)
  • Where shown to be more cost effective, agency force account procedures may be used (23 C.F.R. 635, Subpart B and Order 5060.1)
  • Where an emergency exists,
    • Emergency repair work may be accomplished by the contract, negotiated contract or agency force account methods
    • Permanent repair and reconstruction work may be done by the contract method unless the contracting agency demonstrates that some other method is more cost effective (23 C.F.R. 668.105)
  • Deviations from the competitive bidding requirements in 23 C.F.R. 635, Subpart A or the design-build requirements in 23 C.F.R. 636 may be considered under FHWA's Special Experimental Project No. 14 - Innovative Contracting.

(Note: Federal-aid construction contracts that are not within the right-of-way of a public highway, may be procured with state-approved procedures. See Mr. Horne's June 26, 2008 memorandum.)

Authority/Legal Basis

  1. Laws
  2. Regulations
  3. Orders
  4. Policy Memoranda

Guidance

  1. General Information
  2. Training
Updated: 03/24/2014
Federal Highway Administration | 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE | Washington, DC 20590 | 202-366-4000