21 Mar 2023
The infrastructure community recently celebrated 2022 successes at the North American IJ Global Awards held in New York City. Plenary Americas is thrilled to have been recognized with three awards, including the coveted Sponsor of the Year. Congratulations to all the teams involved in these wins.
For the third year in a row, Plenary Americas was honored with IJ Global’s Sponsor of the Year award. Here’s what some of the independent judges had to say:
“Plenary continues to be a shining light for innovation and excellence in its pursuit of delivering high-quality infrastructure that positively impacts the community and delivers public policy in a long-term affordable way.
“Good examples of this include Gatineau 2 project and DC Smart Street Lighting where high levels of development success and a high employment retention and development rate demonstrate that they care about the people that they support and that support them.”
Another judge added: “Plenary continues to demonstrate its ability to deliver on a wide range of projects both in terms of size and in innovation as well as play a leading role in advocacy both in policy development and transaction design, all with an eye on real community and minority engagement.”
Yet another says: “Plenary excels at focusing on the partnership aspect of P3s – both understanding and meeting owners’ needs to deliver successful projects. This is evident in the depths of negotiation, where Plenary consistently looks for solutions that move projects forward.
The District of Columbia reached financial close on its inaugural P3 project – DC Smart Street Lighting – in May 2022 with a final debt package of roughly $160 million. It represents the first project of this type to make it over the line in the district.
Market firsts are always a tempting proposition for IJ Global Awards, and this one will prove to be a popular choice as it is only the second street lighting P3 in the US and it is considered one of the country’s largest urban streetlight modernization projects.
It is among the first PPPs in the US to address issues under the federal Anti-Deficiency Act – a long-time impediment to P3s procured by federal entities, such as the District of Columbia.
New LED and smart infrastructure technology will be employed that is expected to reduce energy usage by streetlights by more than 50%, thereby eliminating significant greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, as well as reducing light pollution throughout the district through deployment of a remote monitoring and control system for the streetlight network.
The project will also improve connectivity throughout the district through the provision of Wi-Fi coverage in traditionally underserved neighbourhoods.
The Ontario Line – Rolling Stock, Systems, Operations and Maintenance (RSSOM) contract – will deliver a driverless metro system with GoA4 grade automation using proven technologies.
To support the fleet, Connect 6ix will deliver a fully integrated systems package including all power systems, overhead contact system, platform edge doors, signaling, communications, and security, supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA). The RSSOM package also includes the design and construction of a LEED Silver-certified building to serve as the command centre for all Ontario Line operations and maintenance activities.
The RSSOM package is one of multiple packages that make up the full Ontario Line project, a revolutionary transit project in the North American P3 space.
Breaking the project up into smaller, distinct packages was a necessary procurement decision, scaled to meet the capacity of the contracting and lending community. While the splitting up of the project generated sufficient industry interest, it created enhanced needs surrounding technical and commercial integration.
Over the course of the 18-month RFP period, the private and public sectors collaborated, using lessons learned and insight from some of the best minds in the industry to establish an integration regime that accommodates the commercial interests of all stakeholders.
Ultimately, the key ingredient to the overall solution was the contracting authority – Metrolinx – playing an active role in coordinating among the multiple Project Cos, ensuring the credit of the transaction was preserved and therefore bankable despite such a complex, challenging set of construction projects.
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