The Major Bridge P3 (MBP3) was presented to the Pennsylvania P3 Board in November 2020, and pursues the replacement or rehabilitation of nine major interstate bridges through the Design-Build, Finance and Maintain (DBFM) method of progressive P3 delivery. The nine bridges in the MBP3 are:
When the project was initially proposed, PennDOT planned to pay for the work on these bridges using tolls, as was permitted by the Pennsylvania P3 law at the time. Since that time, Act 84 of 2022 amended the P3 law to eliminate mandatory tolling of existing free lanes, and as a result, PennDOT is moving the bridge projects in the MBP3 forward without tolling, as expressly provided for in Act 84.
Bridging Pennsylvania Partners LLC (BPP) was selected to deliver the Major Bridge P3 Program and formed the Development Entity, Bridging Pennsylvania Developer 1, LLC (BPD1) to deliver the first six bridges in the Program (Package One). Bridging Pennsylvania Partners (BPP) is led jointly by Macquarie Capital and Shikun & Binui as Lead Project Developer and Equity Members. Macquarie Capital and Shikun & Binui are international leaders in developing and delivering successful P3 projects.
The BPD joint venture (JV) consortium includes the design & construction expertise of FCC Construction Inc. (FCC) and S&B USA Concessions (SBA), based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, who builds complex infrastructure projects and specializes in P3 and Design-Build projects. SBA is the construction arm of Shikun & Binui Ltd in the US, and is also the parent company of Joseph B. Fay, a subcontractor for this project. MBP3 was designed to make sure there were plenty of opportunities for Pennsylvania companies to share in the work done on the project. Other subcontractors include H&K Group, Inc., Kokosing Construction Company, Michael Baker International, SAI Consulting Engineers, and Wagman.
The path forward for the remaining three bridges (I-83 South Bridge, I-95 Girard Point Bridge Improvement Project and the I-79 Bridgeville Widening, Bridges and Interchange Reconfiguration Project) has yet to be determined.
For the MBP3, Commercial Close refers to the point when all parties have concluded their contract negotiations and have reached an agreement on the commercial terms for the first package of the project. Commercial Close for the MBP3 occurred on November 29, 2022.
Financial Close for the MBP3 refers to the point when the terms and conditions relative to the financing of the project are finalized. Financial Close for the MBP3 occurred on December 22, 2022.
The overall estimated cost for design and construction is approximately $1.5 billion.
PennDOT will make the following payments for the MBP3:
- Availability Payments – The Department has agreed to make future availability payments to BPD1 over a 35-year period. These payments will start with a partial payment (not a full year) in FY 2028 estimated at $48.0 million (construction complete on all six bridges). In FY 2029, an estimated payment of $143.8 million will be paid to reflect the first full year's payment. From that point on, payments will change throughout the 35-year period based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI) to an estimated $177.7 million in FY 2063. The estimated final payment in FY 2064 is estimated to be $26.6 million.
- A Mobilization Payment - The Department has agreed to pay the BPD1 a Mobilization Payment in an amount identified to account for costs of mobilization and other directly related costs, and early purchase of materials totaling $90,000,000.
- A Milestone Payment - The Department has agreed to pay the Borrower a Milestone Payment equal to $50,000,000 when the Borrower completes 65% of the Design & Construction Work, but no earlier than September 1, 2027.
An availability payment are regular payments made to the development entity once construction of the bridges is complete.
Availability Payments will begin at Substantial Completion. Substantial Completion is when construction has been completed for all 6 bridges, which is anticipated to be in the Summer of 2028. PennDOT has agreed to make availability payments over a 35-year period once construction is complete.
Construction is expected to take place from Summer 2023 through Summer 2028 with the first bridge to be completed Fall 2027. The first bridge to go into construction will be I-81 Susquehanna in Fall 2023.
|Bridge||Anticipated Construction Start||Anticipated Bridge Completion|
|I-81 Susquehanna||Fall 2023||Summer 2028|
|I-80 Nescopeck||Summer 2024||Fall 2027|
|I-78 Lenhartsville||Summer 2024||Summer 2028|
|I-80 Lehigh River||Spring 2024||Summer 2028|
|I-80 Canoe Creek||Fall 2023||Fall 2027|
|I-80 North Fork||Spring 2024||Summer 2028|
During construction, BPP is responsible for maintaining the limits of each bridge project, from the beginning of the work zone to the end. PennDOT will still be responsible for snow removal and emergency response for each project.
After construction is complete, BPP will maintain the main bridge structure for 35 years. This includes any work needed for the structure, including regular bridge cleanings, and any preservation, repair, or rehabilitation needed to keep the bridge in good repair. During this time, PennDOT will retain responsibility for litter and snow removal, as well as emergency response.
At the end of 35 years, the bridge will be returned to PennDOT in good condition, meaning that the lifespan of these bridges will extend beyond the 35 years P3 contract term. This approach eliminates any future investments for these bridges during the life of the contract.