Tunnel Business Magazine

FEB 2018

TBM: Tunnel Business Magazine is the market leader for North America. TBM is written for leading professionals in all aspects of tunneling and covers project stories, design elements, contracting strategies, legal issues, new technology and more.

Issue link: http://digital.tunnelingonline.com/i/936573

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Page 13 of 43

TUNNELINGONLINE.COM 1 4 TBM: TUNNEL BUSINESS MAGAZINE // FEBRUARY 2018 • Contractors: Project efficiency is improved when the contractor staff understands the owner's motivation, and the "why" for many of the contract requirements. Partnering can help, but only if the partners bring the right people to the table who can make commitments and abide by them. A good facilitator can ask the right questions and call "B.S." if need be. • D delivery method is still new to many underground con- tractors, engineers, and construction managers. A better process of disseminating lessons learned, both during and post-project, could improve the efficiency of the entire in- dustry. This should include the designer and contractor (or design builder) as well as the construction manager. It's easy to blame another party for issues that come up, but talking them through and documenting lessons learned can make the next design more constructible and the next contract more equitable. • Academia has a role in improving the efficiency of our in- dustry. The engineering schools should incorporate new design techniques and materials into the curriculum, and keep the courses that require skills considered to be non- engineering skills, such as writing and behavioral analy- sis. Co-op and internship programs are great teaching tools because they give students a jump start on project understanding, which is needed to develop management skills on the job. F U N D I N G I S T H E K E Y C O M P O N E N T I N M O V- I N G A N Y P R O J E C T F O R WA R D. W H A T T R E N D S A R E Y O U S E E I N G I N T E R M S O F F U N D I N G ? W H A T A R E T H E P R O S P E C T S F O R I N C R E A S E D F E D E R A L F U N D I N G ? H O W I S P 3 W I T H P R I VA T E F I N A N C I N G I M PA C T I N G T H E M A R K E T ? Bauer – Current trends suggest that public infrastructure projects will be funded less and less by federal dollars; while state, local, and private entities will be more responsible for finding the necessary funding. It is encouraging to see cit- ies like Seattle and Los Angeles leading the charge in paying for the majority of transportation project costs with local tax dollars. I see increased opportunity for Public-Private Part- nership agreements to deliver transportation projects in the future by leveraging private money to make up the gap left by federal contributions – particularly for new transporta- tion technologies like Hyperloop. Morrison – I think we are going to have to wait and see what the current administration and Congress do with funding upcoming projects. So many of these large projects depend on federal funding to some extent that projects could live or die based on the decisions that are made at the federal level. Common sense would say that, with the aged, poor condi- tion of the U.S. infrastructure, funding is a must, unfortu- nately common sense doesn't always prevail. We are seeing more P3 projects coming out, which is a way to overcome a lack of public financing. I think we will continue to see more P3 projects, where applicable, which will certainly be a good thing for the tunneling industry. Wilson – Funding is especially unpredictable in the current political environment. The larger P3 jobs are driven by a time/cost trade-off that encourages less efficiency, and thus higher costs. Infrastruc- ture funding currently has a primary focus on initial con- struction. Because underground projects usually have lower maintenance costs, the underground industry would benefit from a holistic view of construction and maintenance, which, in a typical comparison of above- versus below-ground proj- ects would make the underground projects more competitive. C O N T R A C T I N G H A S A L S O B E E N A T T H E F O R E - F R O N T O F T U N N E L I N G , I N C L U D I N G C O N C E P T S L I K E D E S I G N - B U I L D, R I S K M A N A G E M E N T, D I S - P U T E R E S O L U T I O N , E T C . H O W A R E Y O U S E E - I N G C O N T R A C T I N G P R A C T I C E S C H A N G I N G ? A R E T H E T R E N D S P O S I T I V E O R N E G A T I V E ? W H A T C H A N G E S W O U L D Y O U L I K E T O S E E ? Bauer – Risk allocation is key to any successful tunnel project. Risks should be appropriately allocated to the party with the best ability to manage that risk. An unfortunate trend in tun- neling is the shifting of risks, particularly by inexperienced owners, to the tunneling contractor, who may be ill-equipped to manage those risks. The engineering community needs to do better at convincing all project stakeholders to accept risk which is appropriate for them to manage in order to lead to more successful projects and lower overall project costs. Morrison – I am not involved in this part of the business so my knowledge comes strictly from what I have read and what I have learned from talking to others. With that being said, the general feeling that I get is that contracting is changing for the better. There seems to be a greater willingness and desire between the stakeholders to work together to make sure the project is built correctly, and this carries through to the con- tracting practices as well. Wilson – DRBs have been around since the 1970s and have in- creased in use exponentially since the mid-1990s. This is a big improvement from the previous litigation-centric practices. However, as users of DRBs have gotten more experience with the system, they have started to game the system to their own benefit. Examples are owner agencies that fine-tune the DRB spec for their own benefit by adding "can't review" provisions (excluding the DRB from reviewing portions of the contract or specific disputes), and contractors who are more interested in setting up their case for subsequent dispute adjudication. The primary benefits of the DRB as a contract tool will not be real- ized until the behavior of both parties demonstrates that they are more interested in resolving disputes than kicking the can down the road. I M P R O V E D T E C H N O LO G I E S A N D T E C H N I Q U E S A R E K E Y T O D R I V I N G T H E I N D U S T RY. W H A T I N N O VA T I O N S A R E Y O U S E E I N G T H A T A R E C H A N G I N G T H E WA Y T U N N E L S A R E B U I LT ? W H E R E A R E A S A R E F O R R I P E F O R I M P R O V E - M E N T ? C O V E R S T O RY

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