Metro Recommends $927 Million Contract for Regional Connector

The 1.9 mile Regional Connector will merge several different Metro rail lines to simplify (or eliminate) transfers. 

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s board of directors last week approved a $927.2 million contract to a joint venture of firms Skanska USA and Traylor Brothers Inc. to design and build the Regional Connector light rail circulator.

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The approval, which came on Thursday, April 24, follows a Metro staff recommendation supporting Skanska/Traylor Bros., despite the partnership’s bid being $39 million more expensive than a second bid that Metro reviewed.

In that recommendation, Metro staff noted that Skanska/Traylor Bros. was willing to deliver the project 115 days sooner and to absorb any delay costs.

In addition to the contract, the Metro board approved an additional $40 million increase to the budget of the Regional Connector, which will connect area rail lines with a new route and three stations built in Downtown.

The project, now budgeted at $1.42 billion, is funded through a combination of federal grants and loans, local Measure R tax funds and state bonds.

The Regional Connector is slated for completion in 2020, and Metro believes it will attract 17,000 new daily riders to the light rail system. It will allow riders to travel across the region without having to change trains.

eddie@downtownnews.com

Twitter: @eddiekimx