Minford (Thursday, December 13, 2018) - After many years of hard work, a lot of persistence and a few hurdles, construction of the long-awaited state Route 823 in Scioto County has been completed, and today state and local officials joined together to celebrate the milestone project for not only the county, but also the state.
"We've made history here in Scioto County," said Ohio Department of Transportation Director Jerry Wray. "Not only is this the first time in Ohio's history ODOT has used a public-private partnership to construct a highway project, but it is also the department's single, largest modern earthwork project to date."
Wray was joined Thursday by representatives from the Portsmouth Gateway Group, as well as numerous state and local officials, for a ceremonial ribbon cutting to celebrate construction of the department's largest earthwork project and the first Public-Private Partnership (P3) by ODOT.
In 2011, the 129th Ohio General Assembly, led by Governor John Kasich, gave ODOT the authority to seek funding mechanisms through the private sector for projects that might otherwise not be funded. By securing a P3, the entire project has been constructed all at once rather than in phases, as originally scheduled, to accelerate project delivery by at least eight years.
Renamed the Southern Ohio Veterans Memorial Highway by the Ohio Legislature, the new route is a 16-mile, four-lane limited access highway from U.S. 23 north of Lucasville to U.S. 52 near Sciotoville, and it completes Ohio's missing link in the Appalachian Development Highway System. Under a performance-based contract, the design-build-finance-operate-maintain (DBFOM) project delivery is the first public-partnership (P3) of its kind endeavored by ODOT.
ODOT awarded a contract in 2014 to the Portsmouth Gateway Group for development of the project, and after reaching substantial completion by its scheduled mid-December delivery, the new route will be open to traffic Friday, December 14. After this and with the exception of snow and ice control services which will be retained by ODOT, PGG will be responsible for the route's operation and maintenance for the next 35 years.
The Portsmouth Gateway Group includes ACS Infrastructure Development, Inc.; Infrared Capital Partners Limited; Star America Fund; Dragados, USA; Beaver Excavating; John R. Jurgensen Company; and ms Consultants, and the Independent Quality Firm for the project was HDR, Inc.