WV Senate Moves to Make Design-Build a Permanent Highway Tool

After saving nearly $50 million on ten projects built through a design-build pilot program, a West Virginia senate committee has proposed removing the pilot provision of the program's renewal bill to make design-build a permanent state DOT tool.

The Highway Design Build Pilot Program is up for renewal July 1, 2013. Senate Bill 553, when initially taken up by the Senate Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, would have extended the program for five years.

Paul Mattox, Secretary of the Department of Transportation, explained the program.

“It allows us to construct projects where we may not have plans on the shelf ready to go,” Mattox said. "It allows us to get the project up and procured with the contractor and the engineer working together so that you save time and you save money."

Other changes in the bill include removal of the limit to the number of projects, a reduction in the program's annual cap from $75 to $50 million and a required written annual update for the legislature from the Division of Highways commissioner.

 (more on West Virginia's move to design-build . . . )