Design-Build and Design-Build-Operate-Maintain

Number C-00-15

U.S. Department
of Transportation
Federal Transit


400 Seventh St. S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20590

Dear Colleague:

Design-build and Design-build-operate-maintain (DB/DBOM) are two of the most discussed subjects in transportation construction today. They have been popular project delivery methods in the private sector for many years, and are now gaining significant popularity in the public sector. Under the DB/DBOM approach, a single firm or joint venture is tasked to perform both the design and construction of a project or project elements. The Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 (ISTEA) introduced the DB/DBOM to the transit industry as an experimental program that included five projects to determine if the process can save time, reduce costs, and introduce new technologies. Preliminary results are documented in a report to Congress titled "Turnkey Experience in American Public Transit" and dated October 1998. The report can be obtained from the National Technical Information Service, Springfield, Virginia 22162, (703) 605-6000.

Since a number of transit authorities have now decided to use the DB/DBOM method of project delivery to build new or extended transit systems, the attached document, titled "Interim Guidance on Design-Build Project Delivery and the FFGA Process" describes a process an FTA grant recipient may follow when pursuing a Full Funding Grant Agreement (FFGA) for a new starts project using this method. This interim guidance addresses the projectís engineering milestones only in relationship to the FFGA award. Items of particular emphasis in this guidance include FTA policy and congressional direction to execute an FFGA on a new starts project after FTA has reached an adequate level of confidence in the final cost estimates of the project. Also noteworthy, no existing FTA requirements have changed or been waived to accommodate the DB/DBOM process.

We hope you find this guidance useful, and if you are considering use of the DB/DBOM method, encourage you to apply its elements and practices to your individual settings and requirements.


Nuria I. Fernandez
Acting Administrator

Related Item: Attachment - C-00-15