Mary Scott Nabers is co-founder of the Gemini Global Group, which specializes in business development services, public-private partnership positioning and opportunity identification in any region and at any level of government.
A recognized expert regarding public-private partnerships (P3s), Mary is the author of Collaboration Nation, How Public-Private Ventures Are Revolutionizing the Business of Government. Her book explores this growing trend and how government at all levels is reaching out to private enterprise for innovative ideas that will result in solutions to increasing problems caused by revenue shortfalls.
Illinois – Gov. J.B. Pritzker unveiled a $41.5 billion preliminary infrastructure plan on May 17 to lawmakers at the state Capitol. The draft “Rebuild Illinois” plan addresses the “C” grade the state’s infrastructure received from the Illinois Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers in 2018.
Pritzker’s plan calls for $28.58 billion in spending on roads and bridges, mass transit, rail, aeronautics and other transportation. Education would receive $5.94 billion for state universities, community colleges and PreK-12 institutions. More than $4.4 billion would be directed to state facility infrastructure projects, and $1.01 billion would go to environmental and conservation needs. The plan also included funding for statewide broadband deployment, affordable housing, hospital and health care transformation and economic and community development.
The state would pay for these proposals by doubling its gas tax to 38 cents per gallon and increasing vehicle registration fees among other tax increases. Some of the funding would come from federal and local monies.
California – The City of San Diego plans to start the bid solicitation process in late summer for a $46 million downtown park. The proposed 4.1-acre East Village Green will sit between F and G Streets stretching from 13th Street to 15th Street.
Some of the features of the new park include:
An 8,500-square-foot children’s play area with an interactive water feature and play equipment;
An 820-square-foot, shaded performance pavilion for outdoor performances;
An 11,000-square-foot multi-purpose lawn that is surrounded by sitting areas and table tennis;
A 14,200-square-foot, two-story neighborhood community center. The building will house a half basketball court that doubles as an auditorium, a demonstration kitchen for cooking classes, a yoga studio, city staff offices, public restrooms and other community spaces. It will be programmed by the city’s parks and recreation department.
A paid parking garage with 185 spaces underneath the west block;
Separate-but-adjacent off-leash dog parks; and,
Two cafe buildings operated by a third-party vendor.
The city hopes to begin construction by early 2021. Renderings and phase development plans can be seen here.
Illinois – A move for a third Chicago-area airport is gaining traction backed by Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) support and waning Chicago O’Hare International Airport cargo business.
The South Suburban Airport is proposed for the site of Bult Field in Monee, which the state bought for $34 million in 2014. Since 2002, the state’s transportation department has spent almost $100 million to purchase about 4,500 acres of the 5,800 acres necessary for the airport initially.
Regional leaders envision the state providing the land, a government entity operating the airport and a private developer paying for construction. Part of their plan hinges on the state appropriating $150 million for infrastructure improvements.
Washington, D.C.- The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) plans to invest $116 million in 23 states to help rebuild and improve rural water infrastructure. The USDA is working with local partners to provide financing for 49 water and environmental infrastructure projects. The funding is being provided through the Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant program. It can be used for drinking water, stormwater drainage and waste disposal systems for rural communities with 10,000 or fewer residents.
In South Dakota, the South Lincoln Rural Water System, Inc. will receive $12.4 million in loans to build a water treatment plant, improve small diameter pipe looping and improve the main line. The project also will help ensure the system has the capacity to support future growth.
In California, the San Lorenzo Valley Water District will receive more than $8 million in loans to replace more than 10,000 linear feet of water pipeline and replace two redwood water storage tanks with a new, larger steel tank. The improvements will help prevent water loss through leaks, increase reliability and improve fire flow and water storage. The district serves Ben Lomond, Boulder Creek and Brookdale in Santa Cruz County.
In New Mexico, the city of Socorro will receive around $7.9 million in loans and grants to upgrade and replace interceptor sewer lines that are no longer structurally sound. Several lift stations also will be replaced. The project will upgrade other sewer lines and equipment designed to provide better service to Socorro’s residents.