Rendering of East Plaza for the proposed people mover at LAX

Rendering of East Plaza for the proposed people mover at LAX

The Los Angeles World Airports Board of Commissioners on April 5 voted to award a $4.9 billion, 30-year contract to a contractor consortium to design, construct and operate the planned people mover at Los Angeles International Airport.

The board awarded the contract to a consortium of seven contractors known as LAX Integrated Express Solutions, or LINXS. The vote came six weeks after an initial decision to begin negotiations with the contractor consortium. The price of the contract increased $400 million to allow for flexibility in interest rates for financing over its 30-year duration, LAWA spokesman Mark Waier said.

The contract next goes to the Los Angeles City Council for consideration later this year.

As the centerpiece of a $5.5 billion plan to modernize road and rail access to the airport, the people mover will connect the central terminal area at LAX with a station for the Crenshaw/LAX and Metro Green light rail lines and a consolidated car rental facility nearly two miles to the east. It is projected to cost nearly $2 billion to build and is tentatively set for completion in 2023.

“Today’s vote brings us one step closer to rail at our airport --- and a city that is better connected than ever before,” Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said in a statement.

“For decades, we have talked about linking public transportation to LAX and this has been a top priority for Mayor Garcetti and this board,” commission president Sean Burton said. “Today, we officially enter into a critical three decade partnership with LINXS and take our first concrete step towards achieving this historic and important goal.”

Unlike many public infrastructure contracts that are just for design and construction, this contract is to include all phases of the people mover: Design, financing, construction, operation and maintenance. That’s why the contract value is more than double the anticipated $2 billion construction cost.

LINXS was selected from among five bidding teams; LAWA staff gave it the highest technical score.

The consortium is comprised of seven prime contractors:

• Fluor Corp. (Irving, Texas);

• Balfour Beatty (London);

• ACS Infrastructure Development (Coral Gables, Fla.);

• Dragados USA (New York);

• Hochtief PPP Solutions (Essen, Germany);

• Flatiron Construction (Broomfield, Colo.); and

• Bombardier Transportation (Montreal)

Bombardier Transportation, which has built several automated people-mover systems around the globe, will provide the people mover operating system, including the train cars.

The design subcontractor team is comprised of HDR Inc. (Omaha, Neb.) and HNTB Corp. (Kansas City, Mo.)

Economy, education, energy and transportation reporter Howard Fine can be reached at hfine@labusinessjournal.com. Follow him on Twitter @howardafine.