Nossaman LLP

Patrick D. Harder


T 213.612.7859
F 213.612.7801
777 South Figueroa Street, 34th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90017

Patrick D. Harder chairs Nossaman's Infrastructure Practice Group, the leading law firm in the country focused on the representation of public agencies on public-private partnerships (PPP) and other innovative project delivery methods.

Mr. Harder is experienced with the full range of project delivery methods, including public-private partnerships, design-build projects and construction management.  Working with the State of Florida and its advisors, he helped create a model for the use of availability payment-based PPP structures that laid the groundwork for such deals around the country.

Clients benefit from Mr. Harder's many years of experience in the global construction industry, where he represented private clients and worked on large-scale building and civil works projects of all types, including many delivered using innovative procurement techniques.  Because of his familiarity with the construction process, he can support public agency clients with creative and highly customized procurement approaches, along with efficient risk-mitigation strategies.

In 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014, Chambers USA recognized Mr. Harder as a leading lawyer in the field of PPPs, calling him a "reasonable yet strong defender of his client's position" with a "wealth of practical knowledge."  In 2013, 2014 and 2015, Chambers Global also recognized him as a global leader in the transportation industry.  He is AV Preeminent® Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell.

Prior to joining the Firm, Mr. Harder was general counsel and an executive manager for two of the world's largest construction and engineering firms, both based in Japan.  He also served as legal and business advisor on dozens of public and private construction and infrastructure projects around the world, including the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia – two of the world's tallest buildings.

Representative Work

  • Florida Department of Transportation – I-4 Ultimate.  Leader of the team representing FDOT in the development and negotiation of contract and procurement documents for this project.  The $2.3 billion I-4 Ultimate Project will reconstruct and widen 21 miles of the highway in Orange and Seminole Counties.  It is only the fifth highway PPP in the United States to adopt an availability payment structure.  I-4 Ultimate includes reconstruction of 15 major interchanges, 56 new bridges and 71 bridge replacements.  Four tolled express lanes will be added.  The project was procured as a PPP, through a 40-year DBFOM concession agreement.  The concessionaire will receive milestone payments and final acceptance payments during construction, and availability payments throughout the operating period. The project achieved commercial and financial close in September 2014. 

    The project has received a number of accolades, including: Project Finance International 2014 Americas Transportation Deal of the Year, IJGlobal 2014 North American Transport Deal of the Year and Trade Finance magazine 2014 Deal of the Year.

  • University of California, Merced – 2020 Campus Expansion Project.  Leader of the Nossaman team advising the Regents of the University of California in connection with the procurement of the UC Merced 2020 Project, which involves the design, construction, financing, operation and maintenance of academic, administrative, research, recreational and residential buildings and associated infrastructure.  The project will be located on approximately 219 acres, which includes portions of the existing 104-acre campus, and will involve up to 1.85 million square feet of new facilities. Services include assisting with structuring the procurement, drafting and finalizing procurement and contract documents, and developing the evaluation process. The University announced a shortlist of three proposers in January 2015.
  • Port of Long Beach and Caltrans – Gerald Desmond Bridge.  Lead attorney representing the Port on this project.  With towers rising more than 500 feet into the air and a roadway standing 200 feet over the water, the $1.3 billion Gerald Desmond Bridge is the first cable-stayed bridge for vehicles ever built in California.  The new 1.5 mile bridge will feature six traffic lanes, plus separate bicycle paths and pedestrian walkways.  It is one of ten projects authorized under California's ambitious PPP Design-Build Demonstration Program.  Mr. Harder advised on procurement and contract documents and contract negotiations and is now helping the Port implement the contract during construction.  
  • Florida Department of Transportation – I-595 Corridor Improvements.  Lead attorney representing FDOT on procurement of this project.  The main east-west traffic corridor in Fort Lauderdale is congested at certain times of the day – and predicted to get worse in the coming decades.  Using a PPP structure, construction on the $1.8 billion I-595 renovation is being financed largely by the private sector.  I-595 Corridor was the first transportation project of its kind to use an availability-payment compensation structure.  Redevelopment included resurfacing of 10.5 miles of mainline, construction of additional lanes, and construction of three reversible lanes (to maximize traffic flow) in the median.  The DBFOM concession for a 35-year term was awarded to ACS Infrastructure Development.  Mr. Harder was lead attorney representing FDOT on drafting procurement and contract documents, facilitating the financing structure and leading contract negotiations.  Project construction finished on schedule in Spring, 2014. He is currently advising FDOT on contract issues during the operations phase.

    The project was named 2009 Project of the Year by ARTBA and 2009 North American Transport Deal of the Year by Project Finance Magazine.

  • Washington State Department of Transportation – Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement.  Key member of the legal team representing WSDOT on this project.  The 60-year-old Alaskan Way Viaduct that carries SR-99 through downtown Seattle is being replaced by the world's largest-diameter (55 feet) hard-ground bored tunnel.  The two-mile tunnel underneath the City's heart and along its waterfront will incorporate a double-decked roadway, with incoming and outgoing traffic on different levels.  "Big Bertha," the world's largest tunnel boring machine, began drilling in 2013.  Nossaman served as outside counsel to WSDOT on a $1.35 billion design-build contract, which was awarded to joint venture Seattle Tunnel Partners.  The Firm assisted in risk allocation and drafting procurement and contract documents.
  • Florida Department of Transportation – Port of Miami Tunnel.  Lead attorney advising FDOT on procurement and financing of this PPP to design and build the project.  The $1.5 billion Port of Miami Tunnel consists of twin tunnels under Biscayne Bay linking Port facilities on Dodge Island with MacArthur Causeway and I-395.  The project also adds capacity in each direction on the Causeway.  Under the agreement – only the second availability payment contract executed in the United States – FDOT made milestone payments to the concessionaire during the construction period, upon the achievement of contractual milestones.  Once construction was completed, the department began making availability payments to the concessionaire, contingent upon lane availability and service quality.  The project opened to traffic in August 2014.  Mr. Harder and his colleagues represented FDOT by assisting in risk allocation and by drafting procurement and contract documents. 

    The Port of Miami Tunnel project was named 2010 "Nontraditional Financing Deal of the Year" by The Bond Buyer.   It was named 2009 "Global Deal of the Year" and "P3 Deal of the Year" by Project Finance Magazine, and "North American P3 Deal of the Year" by Project Finance International.  It was named 2007 "Project of the Year" by the ARTBA.

Awards & Honors


Named a Project Finance MVP by Law360, 2014

Selected as a leading lawyer nationally and globally in the field of public-private partnerships by Chambers USA, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014 and Chambers Global 2013, 2014 and 2015.

AV Preeminent® Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell.

Named a Southern California "Super Lawyer" for Transportation/Maritime in 2015 and 2014 by Los Angeles magazine

Bio Photo
Bio Photo



J.D., University of California, Los Angeles School of Law, 1986

B.A., Loyola Marymount University, 1983




Professional Affiliations

International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association

Design-Build Institute of America, Transportation Subcommittee member

American Bar Association: Member, Forum on the Construction Industry

Awards & Honors


Named a Project Finance MVP by Law360, 2014

Selected as a leading lawyer nationally and globally in the field of public-private partnerships by Chambers USA, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014 and Chambers Global 2013, 2014 and 2015.

AV Preeminent® Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell.

Named a Southern California "Super Lawyer" for Transportation/Maritime in 2015 and 2014 by Los Angeles magazine

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