Bid Set #1, Bid Set #2
So, just when you thought that things could not get any more complicated?
The issue covered today is if one part of a project is ready but another part not. The following has been used as a solution for this a number of times. Let’s use the following example of a project that consists of intersection improvements (traffic signal installation, turn lanes, ect) at 5 separate intersections. Let’s also use the following givens:
1. The contract with TDOT includes all 5 traffic signal intersections.
2. The NEPA document has been approved by TDOT and includes all 5 traffic signal intersections.
3. The Design plans have been approved by TDOT for all 5 signalized intersections.
4. The TDOT Regional ROW office has been given a ROW Notice to Proceed for the project (ROW funding has been obligated)
So let’s say the issue is that 3 of the traffic signal intersections are just about ready to go, but 2 of the intersections will require ROW and will take a while to get sorted out. There are two choices on how to handle this:
1. You can continue on with the project and bid it out all at the same time. Then you would follow the regular process.
2. Or, you can break the project into two separate bid sets, which I will explain.
Basically you will break this project up into one section that you will get bid out to contract sooner than the other. What this allows you to do is get funds obligated for construction for the first set and get it under way, while you work out the ROW issues (with the TDOT Regional ROW staff) on the other 2 signal intersections.
Each set will need the same things (Permits Certification, Utility Certification, Bid Book approval, Estimates approval, ROW approval, DBE, Title VI, bid advertisement approved, ect). Some of these certifications can cover both bid sets. If your permit certification, utility certification, Title VI, and DBE goal can cover all 5 intersections then that is just fine. However, things like the ROW certification, Bid books, and detailed estimate approvals will have to be specific to either bid set #1 or bid set #2.
Hopefully this did not get too complicated. Normally, it makes more sense to bid the thing all at once so you can benefit from economies of scale, and a reduced mobilization cost. Let me be clear, by bidding the project out twice, you will need two separate bid books (and two separate bid concurrences by TDOT Construction), and there will be additional expenses and time required. But, if there are time constraints, political pressures, or funding deadlines, it can be very helpful to have the option to break the project up into two bid sets.