After protest, MnDOT sticks with Ames/Lunda for St. Croix Bridge project

Check out the news release from MnDOT on the contracting team selected for Highway 36 reconstruction to make way for the new St. Croix Bridge.

The agency passed over the lowest bidder for a team they say is more committed to federal disadvantaged business targets. Some are asking whether the state has enough trained workers to fill these and other infrastructure jobs in the next few years.

 April 15, 2013

MnDOT selects Ames/Lunda team for Hwy 36 reconstruction

Selection meets federal guidelines for Disadvantaged Business goals

ST. PAUL, Minn. — The Minnesota Department of Transportation selected the Ames/Lunda contracting team to lead the reconstruction and realignment of Minnesota Hwy 36 and Hwy 95 in the first phase of the St. Croix Crossing project. Ames/Lunda bid $58 million.

Originally, C.S. McCrossan and Sons was the apparent best-value bidder. However, upon further review of the contractor’s proposal, MnDOT found that McCrossan did not demonstrate a good-faith effort for hiring disadvantaged business enterprises, a requirement of all projects that receive federal funding. DBEs are women- and minority-owned businesses. Subsequently, the McCrossan proposal was rejected. MnDOT then awarded the contract to the next best-value bidder, the Ames/Lunda contracting team, which committed to the DBE hiring goal of 16.7 percent.

“Federal law requires that women-owned and minority-owned businesses are provided opportunities to participate in building our roads and bridges. This is achieved by establishing DBE goals,” said Jon Chiglo, St. Croix Crossing project manager.

Along with reconstructing and realigning Minnesota Hwy 36 and Hwy 95, the project includes:

• Adding turn lanes on both intersections at Oakgreen and Greely, as well as Osgood

• Realigning the intersection of Oakgreen and Greeley to improve access points

• Creating a shared center turn lane by converting the north and south frontage roads

• Adding a trail along the south frontage road to connect to the new loop trail

• Adding ponds to improve storm water treatment and water quality

• Creating access to Hwy 95 by connecting the south frontage road to Stage Coach Trail

• Realigning the Beach Road bridge to include bike and pedestrian trails

• Constructing noise and retaining walls

• Adding traffic signals, lighting, signing and pavement markings

• Implementing an Intelligent Transportation System with cameras and traffic detection

• Relocating utilities

The Minnesota Hwy 36 project will begin in spring 2013 and conclude in fall 2014.

Beginning in late spring, the St. Croix Crossing project offices, located at 1862 Greeley St. in Stillwater, will have extended office hours with staff available to answer the public’s questions regarding the St. Croix Crossing.