Dear General Contractors and Subcontractors,
The Public Building Commission of Chicago (PBC) is responsible for the design and construction of buildings and other facilities required by our clients. Our clients, including the Chicago Police and Fire Departments, Chicago Public Schools; the Chicago Public Library; the Chicago Park District; and the City Colleges of Chicago, expect the PBC to deliver quality projects on time and within their budgets.
Our clients also expect us to meet their goals for the participation of minority and women owned businesses (MBEs and WBEs) in the contracts we award for the design and construction of their facilities.
In order for the PBC to continue to meet the needs of our clients we need to establish partnerships with the businesses that have the experience, expertise and capability needed to complete the design and construction of police and fire stations, schools, libraries and other civic building projects. Over the past year, the PBC has implemented many changes to address the problems and barriers faced by the contracting community. To this end, the PBC has simplified its contracts and made its terms more equitable. Most importantly, we have committed to resolve disputes, settle claims and make payments quickly.
As a result of our efforts we were successful in attracting competitive bids from qualified contractors for all of our spring 2007 construction projects. Each successful bidder demonstrated in its submission a commitment to meet or exceed our MBE and WBE goals.
This year the PBC has awarded six new projects within its construction estimates. The combined contract value of these projects is more than $160 million and all have met or exceeded the PBC’s MBE and WBE goals. MBE participation currently stands at $52.6 million (28.4%) and WBE at $7.4 million (4.33%). There are five additional projects still to be bid this year (one fire station (E102), one police station (PD12), one library, a vehicle maintenance facility and a school addition) and we anticipate continued bidding success.
A list of the general contractors pre-qualified to bid on E102 and PD12 can be found on the PBC’s website www.pbcchicago.com. We will be soliciting qualifications for the other three projects later this month, so please sign-up for PBC alerts on the website to get notified of these opportunities.
Now is also the time for the PBC to prepare and for contractors to begin to plan for the 2008 bidding and construction season.
If your firm is minority or woman owned but you are not currently certified, we advise you to begin the process of obtaining the necessary MBE or WBE certification now. The PBC honors certifications issued by the City of Chicago, Cook County, the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District, the Chicago Minority Business Development Council (MBE only), State of Illinois – Central Management Services and the Women’s Business Development Center (WBE only). While all of these agencies use the same eligibility standards, they do have different processes and some agencies may take longer than others to complete the process.
Establishing joint ventures for the purpose of bidding and performing projects is also a process that takes time and planning. We encourage MBE/WBE and non-MBE/WBE general contractors to start planning now for 2008 PBC construction opportunities.
The PBC will soon be scheduling business opportunity events for October and November at which time we will present updated information on our 2008 construction program and provide a forum for MBE/WBE firms to network with general contractors.
You can see all of the positive changes that are happening at the PBC by going to out website at www.pbcchicago.com and sign up for alerts so that you will not miss any of the upcoming opportunities.