Awarding a single contract for several preservation, rehabilitation, or replacement projects helps agencies reduce costs and achieve program goals.
Project bundling offers a comprehensive and accelerated delivery solution for addressing strategic program goals. It streamlines design, contracting, and construction; allows agencies to capitalize on economies of scale to increase efficiency; and supports greater collaboration during project delivery and construction.
Bundling Projects Saves Time and Cost
The U.S. transportation system is aging, with many transportation agencies seeing an ever-increasing number of highways and bridges that need more immediate attention. As a result, system performance is reduced, leading to potentially adverse impacts to quality of life, mobility, travel time, freight movements, and emergency response times. Often the most pressing needs are on the local systems, as evidenced by bridges that are being posted for reduced loads.
Project bundling is a proven practice that draws upon efficiencies found through project delivery streamlining, as well as benefits from alternative and traditional contracting methods. A bundled contract could cover a single county, district, or State, and it may be tiered to allow a combination of work types (design, preservation, rehabilitation, or complete replacement). Bundling design and construction contracts saves procurement time, leverages design expertise, and builds momentum toward keeping critical assets in a state of good repair.
- Expedited Project Delivery. Project bundling delivers strategic program solutions by streamlining various project delivery requirements such as environmental agreements and standardized designs.
- Reduced Cost. Bundling projects with shared features leverages design expertise and achieves economies of scale.
- Contracting Efficiency. Using a single contract award for several similar projects streamlines design and construction and saves procurement time.
State of the Practice
Project bundling efforts by State departments of transportation (DOTs), local agencies, and tribal governments have reduced costs and streamlined design and construction. Bundling allowed them to take advantage of funding opportunities and quickly address critical bridge and road projects.
Examples of successful project bundling include:
- Delaware DOT uses a series of bundling contracts to address preservation issues on bridges and culverts. The Bridge Management Section prioritizes the work and the Maintenance Districts administer the contracts. Scopes include deck sealing, bridge painting, deck patching, joint repair, and culvert replacement.
- Pennsylvania DOT (PennDOT) conducted a three-county pilot project that rebuilt, replaced, or removed 41 county-owned structures for $25 million, resulting in a 25–50 percent savings on design and a 5–15 percent savings on construction. PennDOT followed up on this success by pursuing a statewide, 558-bridge bundling contract.
- Ohio DOT’s Bridge Partnership Program is replacing or rehabilitating 220 county bridges over 3 years funded through $120 million in Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicles (GARVEE bonds).
- Georgia DOT’s Design-Build Bridge Replacement Program, which began in 2016, will replace 25 local bridges over 1,095 calendar days through new revenue available under the State’s Transportation Funding Act of 2015.
- Oregon DOT’s $1.3 billion State Bridge Delivery Program replaced or repaired 271 bridges using 87 project bundles.