Strong competition for first ARC contract
Strong competition for first ARC contract Nov 2009
Paula Wallis, TunnelTalk
Less than $2 million separates the two lowest bidders vying for the first of three design-build tunneling contracts for the largest mass transit project currently underway in the United States.

New Jersey-New York rail route

At $583 million, Barnard/Judlau JV submitted the lowest of three qualified bids for the Manhattan Tunnels contract in the ARC (Access to the Region's Core) Project for New Jersey Transit. The firm fixed-price contract is Phase I of the $8.7 billion rail tunnel under the Hudson River to increase commuter train capacity from New Jersey into New York City.
The Shea/Schiavone/Skanska JV was outbid by a narrow margin with its bid of $584.5. ARC Constructors, a JV of S.A. Healy/CCA Civil/Halmar, submitted the third bid of $598 million.
The contract includes four hard rock drives under central Manhattan for a total 19,000ft (5,791m) of TBM tunneling, five cross passages, cavern construction for the Warrington track crossover facility, a 160ft deep x 160ft diameter(49m x49m) shaft, plus utility diversions and site mobilization work.
New Jersey Transit will evaluate the bids for conformance to bonding and other criteria before an anticipated award of the contract by the end of the year and start of construction by early 2010. Judlau is currently working in joint venture with Dragados of Spain on about $1.5 billion of underground excavation works for the East Side Access project that will bring Long Island Railroad services into Grand Central Terminal on Manhattan’s East Side.
Bids for the estimated $250 million Phase II Palisades Tunnels on the New Jersey side of the Hudson are due in by December 2, 2009. The same three JVs plus one more, OHL/Tully JV, have pre-qualified to bid this contract. It includes TBM bored tunnels running through the hardrock of the Palisades to the Hoboken access shaft. The twin tunnels will be approximately 5,200ft (1,584m) long, and will have a finished inside diameter of about 24ft 6in (7.6m).
Meanwhile, pre-qualification is underway for the estimated $500 million Hudson River crossing. This third and final design-build contact extends the twin bored tunnels 7,300ft (2,225m) under the Hudson starting at the Hoboken shaft in New Jersey and ending at the Twelfth Avenue shaft, in Manhattan. The contract also includes design and construction of nine cross passages. A pressurized face TBM capable of both hard rock and soft ground excavation is required.
Work on this major piece of public transportation infrastructure in the United States started in June 2009 when officials celebrated a groundbreaking event on the 3.7 mile tranist project.
ARC prepares Hudson Tunnels contract - TunnelTalk, Oct 2009
ARC contract update - TunnelTalk, July 2009
First ARC contract advertised - video - TunnelTalk, May 2009
Access to the Regions Core - video - TunnelTalk, Feb 2009
East Side Access optimizations - TunnelTalk, Aug 2008
ARC contractor information


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