Solving Traffic Congestion in Florida: I-595 Corridor Improvement Project

Traffic in and out of Fort Lauderdale on Interstate 595 was heavy, with no relief in sight.  Taking action, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) called us.

PROJECT DETAILS

FDOT decided to resolve the issue through the addition of reversible lanes in the median of I-595 to accommodate the directional traffic congestion.  Given the various demands on FDOT's budget for capital improvements, the I-595 Express Corridor Improvements Project would be broken into numerous small projects and built over a period of approximately 25 years.  Looking for alternatives to provide quicker relief, FDOT, Nossaman, and FDOT's financial and technical advisors designed a deal structure that attracted a private partner to design, build, finance, operate and maintain the reversible toll lanes in return for deferred payments, known as availability payments.  To ensure the quality of the project, the deal included incentives for good performance.

Just as the P3 deal was about to close, the financial markets fell into disarray, forcing the developer to scrap their plans to sell bonds to raise money for the project.  We helped FDOT quickly revise the financial plan based on a bank financing strategy.

The $1.8 billion I-595 Corridor Improvement Project achieved financial close in March 2009.  With major construction completed in approximately four years, the reversible express lanes of I-595 opened for traffic on March 26, 2014.

FINANCING

  • $781 million bank loan
  • $603 million TIFIA loan
  • $208 million in private equity

INNOVATION

  • This was the first project in the U.S. transportation sector to use an availability payment compensation structure.

HONORS & AWARDS

  • "Project of the Year"  |  American Road and Transportation Builders' Association, 2009
  • "North American Transport Deal of the Year"  |  Project Finance magazine, 2009

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