By: David S. Blaisdell, Senior Manager, Bechtel Enterprises (BEn)
In the past 10-15 years, public agencies have increasingly partnered with the private sector to build and run major new transportation projects, typically through what is commonly known as Public-Private Partnerships, or P3s. In a P3, private-sector partners, either a single company or more often a consortium, are selected through a competitive procurement process to design, build, finance, operate, and maintain (DBFOM) the infrastructure, typically for the construction period plus an operating period of 25 years or longer. The private sector also invests equity and raises financing.
Public-private partnerships (P3s) are most commonly known for funding large-scale water infrastructure projects that a utility can’t support through traditional funding. However, other key attributes in the P3 model are often overlooked. In a P3, the private entity may provide the capital, but the true benefits go well beyond financing alone.
Once considered the purview of Jetsons-era futurescapes, smart street systems have made the transition from science fiction to real city council planning agendas. Sensor-laden Wi-Fi kiosks, smart streetlights, EV charging stations and integrated urban mobility systems are generating rising interest as cities demand greater connectivity, resource efficiency, enhanced public safety and more effective municipal service delivery.
Black & Veatch 2017 Strategic Directions: Smart City/Smart Utility Report
Multimedia with summary
One of the challenges in smart city transportation is to be able to go from point A to point B, while reducing the number of cars on the market, and also being able to use existing public transportation.