How Much Have We Lost?

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Mulligan Road Delayed...AGAIN

My constituents who live in both Hayfield, the Route 1 Corridor and Mt. Vernon are are very interested in the completion of Mulligan Road which will run between U.S. 1 at the Woodlawn Mansion and Telegraph Road.  I previously wrote about the status Mulligan Road here:


Most of the grading work has been completed through Fort Belvoir (picture at the right). 

To complete the road, the connection to Telegraph Road needs to be constructed, land acquired from the Woodlawn Mansion, grading between Pole Road and U.S. 1 completed, some slight adjustments to the intersections of Old Mill (new Mulligan), Mount Vernon Memorial Highway, U.S. 1, and the Woodlawn Estate and then paving the entire length of the road.

Now that funding has been completed, the project was bid out. After the bid was awarded, a bid protest was filed, and the project had to be rebid.  The project was posted on February 17, 2011, rebid, and the $10.2M contract was awarded on June 23, 2011 for the second time.  Bulldozers were scheduled to start digging this month. 

Last night, I attended the public hearing at the South County Government Center regarding the potential widening of U.S. 1.  Before the meeting, Supervisor Jeff McKay and I spoke to a representative of the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA).

The representative advised us that yet another bid protest has been filed by a disgruntled contractor and that the project is currently on hold although utility relocation will proceed.

I have spoken with Supervisors Hyland and McKay and Senator Puller.  The word "annoyed" does not begin to describe the level of frustration that we feel.  This project will save tens of thousands of people hundreds of thousands of hours per year and help to alleviate Route 1 congestion and the effects of BRAC.  Further delays with this project are not acceptable and I will do everything I can to make this project move forward. 

I will post further updates when I have them.  In the meantime, I'm thinking about introducing legislation renaming the road "Snakebit Road."

****UPDATE****

The FHWA has advised me that under federal bid protest contracting rules there will be no decision on the bid protest until at least January 20, 2012.  Given timeframes for deployment, etc. the earliest possible construction start would be Spring, 2012

***SECOND UPDATE***
The bid protestor in both cases was the Overland Corporation.  If you are interested, you can follow the status of the bid protest here using Solicitation Number DTFH71-11-R-00009:

5 comments:

  1. FHWA needs to come up with a benefit cost ratio that balances the cost of 1 disgruntled contractor vs the small businesses and citizen's "disgruntledness". How is it the value of the concern of 1 contractor can trump the negative impact this delay will have on the economic viability of the area and the negative cost impact it will have on the rest of the world. You could also throw in negative green house affects of car exhaust needing to go much farther using the existing poor road system vs the proposed more direct route. Just a suggestion.

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  2. Hear, Hear mjv. While we need to have process to question the legitimacy of the contracting process, it is hard to believe that the same company can delay the process twice thus increasing the costs not just to the community but the costs of the project because of changes in price of supplies etc without some sort of sanction. What is going to stop them from protesting a third time, delaying the project yet again. This is truly a broken process.

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  3. It seems that it's time to protest against the Overland Corporation. Occupy them!

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  4. The website you gave above shows the protest was dismissed on Dec 21, 2011. I see both utility work (tree clearing) and construction vehicles on the actual new roadway this week. Has construction officially begun? Is there a new schedule?

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  5. Yes it has. I've been meaning to post something about this and will try to do something today.

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