Two rulings were issued recently, which allows the Florida Department of Transportation to proceed with building “The Fountain,” their chosen design for the proposed $802m Signature Bridge project in downtown Miami.
In March, the Third District Court of Appeal ruled against former Miami commissioner Marc Sarnoff, who had sued FDOT. A 2013 settlement agreement was not enforceable by a Miami-Dade court, according to the ruling. In addition, a lower court decision that denied FDOT’s request to transfer the case to Leon County Circuit Court was ruled incorrect.
In April, the State of Florida Division of Administrative Hearings also ruled in favor of FDOT. Losing bidder Fluor-Astaldi-MCM failed to prove the decisition to award the project to Archer Western- de Moya Joint Venture was clearly erroneous, contrary to competition, arbitrary or capricious, according to a judge.
Award of the project was announced in May 2017. Construction was set to begin in December 2017 with completion in late 2022, but was delayed by the legal action.
Tish Burgher, a Communications Manager for FDOT, confirmed that Fluor Astaldi withdrew their challenge on April 18 following the recommendation issued by an Administrative Law Judge.
The final order was signed by FDOT Secretary Mike Dew on April 30, allowing the department to proceed with the execution of a contract with the “Fountain” team, Archer Western-de Moya. FDOT doesn’t yet have a construction schedule, she said.
Of the $802 million cost, $626 in funds are coming from the State of Florida, including state motor fuels tax, vehicle license fee, documentary stamp collections. The remaining $186 million is being paid for locally by MDX toll revenue bond proceeds.