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Project Profile: I-70 Bridges Corridor Renovation Project

I-70 Bridges Corridor Renovation Project

photo credit: Office of the Governor of West Virginia

Location

Ohio County, West Virginia

Project Sponsor / Borrower

West Virginia Department of Transportation (WVDOT)

Program Areas

Alternative Project DeliveryProject Finance

Mode

Highway

Description

The I-70 Bridges Project involves the rehabilitation of 23 bridges in West Virginia, the rehabilitation of the BEL-70 Bridge in Ohio and the replacement of the two Fulton Bridges above Wheeling Creek at the SR 250 interchange east of the Wheeling Tunnel. The bridge repairs include a combination of new decks or new deck overlays, concrete substructure repairs, steel repairs of areas with section loss or cracking, elimination of deck joints, new coating systems, and other miscellaneous maintenance repair items. The intent of the project is to provide structurally safe bridges and connections that accommodate local and interstate travel demand.

The need for the project arose from 2013 inspections that revealed that three of the I-70 bridges were structurally deficient and others were rated from fair to poor, with areas of heavy rust pack, corrosion, section loss, spalling, and cracking as well as substandard pedestrian facilities. The renovation of the I-70 bridges was one of WVDOT's top investment priorities. To help minimize the duration of driver impacts, WVDOT determined that the most efficient way to rehabilitate or replace the 26 bridges would be to combine them in a single construction project.

WVDOT completed an environmental review of the bundled bridge project in 2017 and included it in a roster of improvements to be funded through the Roads to Prosperity transportation revenue initiative. This statewide bond referendum was approved by 73 percent of West Virginia voters on October 7, 2017 and authorized the sale of up to $1.6 billion in road bonds paid for by a 3.5-cent increase in West Virginia's motor fuel tax, a one percent increase in motor vehicle sales tax and increases in other Department of Motor Vehicle fees.

The I-70 Bridges Corridor Renovation was the first Roads to Prosperity project to be procured by WVDOT. However, when design-build proposals were received in July 2018, the low bid of $275 million was $100 million above the state's estimated cost. The Governor directed WVDOT to reject the bids and scale the project back. WVDOT issued a second request for proposals a year later and received five bids on July 30, 2019. It awarded a $215 million design-build contract to Swank Construction, the low bidder, in August 2019. The project is expected to be completed in approximately two years and is funded through general obligation bonds available through the Roads to Prosperity program. The state also plans to augment the Roads to Prosperity program with up to $500 million in GARVEE bonds and $700 million in highway bonds backed by toll increases on the West Virginia Turnpike.

Cost

$215 million

Funding Sources

General Obligation Bonds - $215 million

Project Delivery / Contract Method

Design-build

Private Partner

None

Project Advisors / Consultants

Design-builder - Swank Construction

Lenders

Bondholders

Duration / Status

Construction is scheduled to begin in October 2019

Substantial completion is expected in October 2021

Financial Status

Closed

Innovations
  • The I-70 Bridges Corridor Renovation project bundles the replacement or rehabilitation of 26 bridges into a single contract to accelerate project completion and minimize traffic impacts.
  • The project was included as one of the improvements in the $1.6 billion Roads to Prosperity statewide bond referendum.
  • The Roads to Prosperity program may be augmented by $500 million in GARVEE bonds and up to $700 million in State Parkways Authority bonds to be financed by raising tolls on the West Virginia Turnpike.
Related Links / Articles

RFP

Project Handout

Drive Forward WV Interstate 70 Bridges

Roads to Prosperity FAQs

WVDOTPress Release

Contacts

Raymond J. Scites
Director, Engineering Division
West Virginia Department of Transportation
Tel: (304) 558-2885
Raymond.J.Scites@wv.gov

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