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Sat September 19 2020

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Winning bid for Californian high-speed line comes in $800m under budget

15 Dec 14 Dragados/Flatiron/Shimmick has been named as the apparent best-value team to design and build a 105km segment of high-speed rail in California after bidding US$800m (£509m) under the upper estimate.

The California High-Speed Rail Authority had estimated the cost of the section to be between US$1.5bn and and US$2bn but the Dragados/Flatiron/Shimmick bid came in at US$1.2bn (£763m). The other bidders were Tutor Perini/Zachry/Parsons (US$1.74bn) and Golden State Rail Partnership (US$2.1bn).

Dragados is part of Spain’s ACS and Flatiron is part of Germany’s Hochtief. Jacobs is the lead designer for the team, with support from design subconsultants Sener Engineering & Systems, RBF, Fugro, and Typsa.

“Today is a significant milestone as we continue building the nation’s first high-speed rail system,” said California High-Speed Rail Authority CEO Jeff Morales. “The proposals underscore the value of world-class competition and the design-build approach to deliver high-speed rail in California.”

In the competitive bidding process, three teams submitted proposals for the design-build contract. The proposals were evaluated and ranked based on 30 percent for technical merit and 70% for cost. Factors such as an understanding of the project, schedule capacity, project approach and safety were part of the technical scoring.

In October 2013, a request for qualifications was issued and five teams were qualified and began competing for the contract. Three teams submitted their proposals, which were reviewed by an evaluation panel of California state personnel.

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