Airport’s $1 billion expansion may be managed by two firms based in ATL, one in NYC

By David Pendered

Mayor Kasim Reed’s administration has recommended the $1 billion expansion of Atlanta’s airport be overseen by Parsons Brinkerhoff, Inc., H.J. Russell & Co., and Heery International.

Atlanta airport, at night

Atlanta is planning a $1 billion upgrade of the city’s airport to handle a projected 25 percent increase in passengers by 2031. Credit: creativecommons.org

The joint venture is named Atlanta Aviation Assoc., or A3. The initial payment is $2 million over the next five years; terms for additional payments are not mentioned in the legislation. The city has the option to extend the contract by a decade, in two five-year increments.

The selection ends a long period of speculation over which firms would be selected to provide program management services for the sweeping upgrades planned for Hartsfield Jackson Atlanta International Airport.

Invitations were issued Sept. 22. The city extended the deadline for responses from Nov. 5 to Dec. 17, without explaining the reason for the delay. At that point, the process seemed to disappear from public view.

In February, the airport’s spokesman said he could make no comment on the process of reviewing proposals submitted by vendors, other than to say that the review was proceeding on schedule.

Arnold Rosenthal

Arnold Rosenthal. Credit: linkedin.com

Aviation General Manager Miguel Southwell and Chief Procurement Officer Adam Smith formally recommended A3 win the bid. Southwell and Smith made their decision following the review of proposals that was conducted by the Aviation Department’s Evaluation Committee, with support from the Procurement Department, according to the legislation.

Russell and Heery are based in Atlanta. Parsons Brinkerhoff is a global firm based in New York and has its Atlanta offices in Buckhead, at Tower Place.

Arnold Rosenberg, with Parsons Brinkerhoff, is to serve as principal-in-charge. Rosenberg serves as the firm’s National Aviation Practice Leader for Construction and Program Management. Rosenberg is based in the firm’s Washington office.

Michael Russell, of Russell & Co., serves on the joint venture’s executive committee. Glenn Jardine, of Heery, serves on the joint venture’s executive committee.

Michael Russell

Michael Russell. Credit: robinson.gsu.edu

A3 has identified 14 sub-consultants, and some of them employ individuals well known in metro Atlanta’s civic and business circles. The list includes:

  • Robert Brown, who chaired the Grady Health System’s board, has served on two state boards, and chaired the Georgia Chamber of Commerce;
  • David Perkins, who provided program management services to Atlanta’s airport from 2006 to 2006;
  • Cynthia Jones Parks, a past board member of the Metro Atlanta Chamber and director of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta’s small business advisory board.

The Atlanta City Council is poised to begin its review of the nomination of A3. The council’s Transportation Committee is slated to discuss the resolution at its meeting Wednesday. Councilmember Felicia Moore chairs the committee.

The scope of work in the contract includes advising airport officials on a wide array of renewal and replacement projects. The projects are intended to enable the airport to handle expected growth in passenger and cargo services at the world’s busiest passenger airport.

Glenn Jardine

Glenn Jardine. Credit: linkedin.com

Expansion plans include the possibility of building a sixth runway; adding parking for passengers and employees; and expanding air cargo facilities.

The airport handled 96.2 million passengers and 868,359 operations in 2014, according to an airport report. Growth is expected to boost these numbers to 120 million passengers and 1.1 million operations, by 2031, according to the airport’s master plan.

The annual cost of construction projects to accommodate this growth is expected to “easily” exceed $100 million a year, according to the request for proposals the city issued in 2014. The construction cycle is expected to last 10 years or more. Funding sources have not been identified.

Competitors for the contract included:

  • Felicia Moore

    Councilmember Felicia Moore

    A3;

  • Atlanta Program Partners, comprised of CH2MHill, Rohadfox Construction, and Thrasher;
  • AECOM Technical Services;
  • The Louis Berger S.L. King Technologies, Inc.;
  • Diversified Aviation Consultants.

Incidentally, although AECOM did not with the project management contract, it did win the administration’s support for a two-year renewal of its contract to provide on-call asset management and sustainability services. Terms were not identified in the legislation to extend AECOM’s contract beyond the initial three-year term, which expires May 16.

David Pendered, Managing Editor, is an Atlanta journalist with more than 30 years experience reporting on the region’s urban affairs, from Atlanta City Hall to the state Capitol. Since 2008, he has written for print and digital publications, and advised on media and governmental affairs. Previously, he spent more than 26 years with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and won awards for his coverage of schools and urban development. David graduated from North Carolina State University and was a Western Knight Center Fellow. David was born in Pennsylvania, grew up in North Carolina and is married to a fifth-generation Atlantan.

1 reply
  1. Burroughston Broch says:

    David, take a closer look at two of the players.
    Parsons Brinckerhoff was purchased by Balfour Beatty in 2009 and sold last October to Canada-based WSP Group; the reason for the sale was Balfour Beatty’s dismal financial performance that resulted in the firing of their CEO.
    Heery was earlier purchased by Balfour Beatty and was not sold with Parsons Brinckerhoff. Heery was formerly operated as a division of Parsons Brinckerhoff because of their prior chaotic management. Heery was involved in multiple litigations, among them being the protracted litigation with DeKalb County.
    It will be interesting to see if Balfour Beatty becomes part of the airport team.Report

    Reply

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