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New Bridge/Highway/Tunnel
Massachusetts Turnpike Authority
Boston, Massachusetts USA

Boston's Central Artery/Tunnel (CA/T) project was a $14.8 billion dollar underground construction project that involved:

  • A new cable-stayed bridge
  • The relocation and removal of an existing above-ground interstate highway system
  • A new highway tunnel
  • A complex set of interchanges

Challenge
Given the magnitude and complexity of the project, the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority (MTA) needed to implement a sound management structure and reliable project control processes to address the ever-changing dynamics that inherently resided within the project management.

Leonard P. Zakim Bunker Hill Memorial Bridge

Solution
Helmes&Co provided a variety of consulting services for the MTA on a task assignment basis over a seven-year period. These assignments included:

Project Management Oversight Services
The MTA requested a comprehensive performance assessment on key aspects of the project, such as schedule, budget, and quality.

We also assessed the current management plans and offered recommendations to management for performance improvements, thus providing it with an opportunity to refocus its efforts on achieving the desired results within the established project schedule and budget constraints.

Management Performance Reviews
In addition to the project-wide management reviews, we performed a number of special purpose management assessments. These assessments focused primarily on streamlining project management and/or specific departments to achieve efficient management goals.

Basis for Contract Renegotiations
We performed a detailed review of funds provided to the City of Boston for project-related services and activities, concluding with recommendations on the performance of future services to be provided either by the city or the project. We also identified areas for improved performance consistent with the project's schedule while maintaining an adequate level of city-related services.

Recovery Schedule Development
We facilitated the development of a revised contract schedule, incorporating new interim contract milestones desired by the owner, while rescheduling work activities to recover time necessary to meet substantial completion milestone dates. Working jointly with the contractor and owner, each party achieved its objective while ensuring a reasonable to-go schedule for contract completion.

Schedule Oversight
In providing scheduling oversight services on several contracts, we were able to facilitate a productive relationship between the contractors and the owner, and when necessary, achieved fair and equitable resolution for schedule delays. The owner was able to immediately identify delays presented in schedule updates and strive to achieve mutual agreement by the parties on the responsibility for such delay. This process eliminated the potential for delay claims and established a procedure for identifying schedule.

Cost Recovery Investigations
On several contracts on the project, we sought to determine the possible existence of recoverable costs due to negligent or inefficient actions on the part of the design and management consultants retained by the owner. These reviews encompassed design errors and omissions, differing site conditions, contractor means and methods, and other related issues. Our findings were submitted to the cost recovery committee for consideration on whether to pursue.

Pay Requisition Process Review
We facilitated the development of a revised contract schedule, incorporating new interim contract milestones desired by the owner, while rescheduling work activities to recover time necessary to meet substantial completion milestone dates. Working jointly with the contractor and owner, each party achieved its objective while ensuring a reasonable to-go schedule for contract completion.

Value Engineering Cost Proposal (VECP) Facilitation
We were retained by a contractor to clearly define the potential cost and time savings that their VECP initiative would offer the MTA. Subsequently, we served as facilitators for both the contractor and the MTA to present the revised traffic configurations to the City of Boston, the entity with jurisdiction over the surface traffic. Our involvement resulted in the approval of the traffic plan redesign, resultant schedule and cost savings.

Litigation Proceeding Assistance
We assisted counsel in the defense of a business interruption litigation proceeding that settled favorably for the owner with no damages assessed to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Value
As typical of major capital programs, there were many parties involved in the project that needed to be well coordinated to achieve a successful outcome. Working with the private entities, such as the program manager, designers and contractors, and the public entities, such as the Federal Highway Administration and the City of Boston, Helmes&Co successfully provided oversight services to the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority by:

  • Identifying and monitoring risks to budget and schedule
  • Streamlining processes to gain efficiencies
  • Providing consultation to avoid protracted disputes

The personnel directly involved with the management of the project and administration of contracts were subject to many daily pressures. Helmes&Co's involvement offered a higher-level perspective of the performance of the project, and we were in a better position to offer suggestions/recommendations to supplement the efforts of the project personnel.

The nature and dynamics of this project required the consultation to be structured with productive relationships among various entities and adaptive to changing conditions.

Note: To ensure client confidentiality is maintained, certain project details have been sanitized.