A panel of Tri-State agencies gathered on Tuesday, July 25th to explain how the “Summer of Hell” and the current economic climate will be shaping future growth in our regional A/E/C market. Panelists included Len Greco, SVP of the Capital Division at NYCEDC; Eric DaLeo, Assistant Executive Director of Capital Planning & Programs at NJ Transit; Rick Bell, Executive Director of Design and Construction Excellence at NYC Department of Design and Construction; Rob Eisenstat, Chief Architect of the PANYNJ; and Mark Lohbauer, the New Jersey Director of the Regional Plan Association.
Michael McCann, Manager of Business Development and Marketing at the Clarient Group led a smart discussion that demonstrated how A/E/C firms can better position themselves to win agency RFPs by addressing these challenges.
The best A/E/C firms are those that are able to think through the logistics of space constraints required for e.g. the relocation of substations and other susceptible components of our electrical and transportation systems. And, the ability to creatively stage projects in a multi-nodal environment (trains, bikes, busses, ferries), is also critical, according to Eric DaLeo.
NYC is the most expensive city in the world in which to build. Rob discussed how firms that can bring skill, creativity and problem solving to their agency clients in order to build a project within budget are highly sought after. His agency is working toward finding new ways to use a design-build project delivery model in order to reward companies who are able to do this.
All panelists concurred that much of the ongoing agency work will continue to focus on SGR projects (State of Good Repair) that not only maintain, but also improve existing infrastructure and transportation hubs. And in some cases, AEC companies may be able to anticipate upcoming revitalization projects by, for example, browsing online to the NJ Transit assessments that are conducted every three years. It will continue to be important for agencies and firms to work together aggressively to reduce construction costs.
Check out photos of the event here.