The Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority board of directors wants to dig into more details of the proposals from contractors bidding for the 183 North project before making a decision on an award.
The project to add two tolled lanes in each direction along US 183 from MoPac to SH 45 N in Travis and Williamson counties is expected to begin construction later in the year. Before work can begin, the Mobility Authority has to award a design-build contract to one of three competing companies.
Mike Sexton, the Mobility Authority’s acting director of engineering, presented the three proposals to the board Jan. 27 from Capital Express Partners, Colorado River Constructors and Great Hills Constructors. The proposal from Great Hills Constructors came in at the lowest price—$477 million—and received a perfect technical score, according to a rubric from staff, but the board wanted more time to review. The design-build contract makes up the majority, but not the entirety, of the project cost.
“Essentially it was a 10-minute presentation,” board member John Langmore said. “All we got was the final score, not the underlying components that were most critical to evaluating that. I guess I feel like on a half a billion dollar contract, I’m certainly more than willing to dedicate some time ... to feel we have done everything within our power to ensure the design and construction of 183 North goes really, really well.”
The Mobility Authority is set to call a special meeting in February to take up the decision and award the contract. The road is set to open in late 2025.
Bill Chapman, chief financial officer for the Mobility Authority, presented the board with potential toll rates for the length of the project, which he said the board has the authority to change throughout the four years leading up to the opening of 183 North.
According to the numbers Chapman presented, it would cost a minimum of $1.42 to drive the length of the project in the express lane, with rates fluctuating based on demand, similar to the MoPac express lanes.
Cost: $612 million
Funding source: toll revenue bonds, Texas Department of Transportation