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State Street Prospects Include Local Firms, Former Toll Road Operator

City of West Lafayette

Three groups of companies have signified their interest in working on the redesign of West Lafayette’s State Street.

Two groups include companies with a presence in Greater Lafayette. The Plenary Roads State Street team includes Rieth-Riley Construction and the Walsh Gateway Partners team includes Milestone Contractors.

The third team is led by an Australian firm that may be familiar to Hoosiers – Macquarie Holdings. It’s the same company that formed one half of the international consortium that leased the Indiana Toll Road for nearly $4 billion early in now-Purdue President Mitch Daniels’ first term as Indiana’s governor.

Adrian Allen, a Purdue lawyer who’s helping to vet the three proposals, says each group’s past successes and failures will be considered, including Macquarie’s work with the company that eventually went bankrupt trying to run the Indiana Toll Road and had to sell back the road to recoup some of its costs.

Allen says the team will do its own research outside of answers the groups provide during interviews to determine how satisfied previous clients have been with each company.

“We’re looking at similar projects they might have done, as well as their overall portfolio,” Allen says.

Allen says those groups that have strong local ties may have a leg up in the bidding process.

“It is important to the city and the University and the team here that we have a good mixture of local and national firms on the respective teams. It certainly is part of the review criteria to assess the local impact of this particular project,” he says.

Still, Allen adds other factors such as cost and the quality of the firms will also play a central role in deciding which consortium gets the contract.

Purdue Physical Facilities Managing Director Don Petersen says the review team is familiar with many of the companies that comprise each of the three bids.

“We feel we have a good cross-section with our advisors and their folks here at Purdue and at West Lafayette to properly evaluate them. And we all have experience working with them,” Petersen says.

The groups now await a July 23 meeting to see which of them is presented to the State Street working group as a possible vendor.

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