JTA selects Balfour Beatty V2R Team for Bay Street Innovation Corridor

Aug. 27, 2021
The project serves as the first phase of the JTA’s U2C autonomous vehicle service in downtown Jacksonville.

The Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA) Board of Directors has selected the Balfour Beatty Vision 2 Reality (V2R) Team to deliver the first phase of JTA’s Ultimate Urban Circulator (U2C) autonomous vehicle service with the Bay Street Innovation Corridor (BSIC). JTA and Balfour Beatty will move to negotiating the terms of a final contract, which will also come before the board for approval later this year.

The BSIC project will introduce autonomous vehicles along a transportation corridor in downtown Jacksonville and serve as the initial phase of the U2C, which is JTA’s vision for the conversion and expansion of the Skyway automated people mover (APM) system in downtown Jacksonville and the surrounding neighborhoods. The three-phase U2C includes the Bay Street Innovation Corridor, the full conversion of the Skyway superstructure and the expansion into nearby neighborhoods. When completed, the system will expand the current Skyway from a 2.5-mile system to the 10-mile U2C, leveraging the latest autonomous vehicle technologies.

“This award represents a major milestone for the U2C, the JTA and downtown Jacksonville,” said JTA Chief Executive Officer Nathaniel P. Ford Sr. “We are confident the Balfour Beatty team and its partners will deliver a world-class project on behalf of the taxpayers of Jacksonville, placing our community at the forefront of innovation.”

This will be the second major project Balfour Beatty will deliver for JTA following the Jacksonville Regional Transportation Center at LaVilla in May 2020. The Balfour Beatty V2R team will oversee 60 percent design of the BSIC, a three-mile, at-grade service along Bay Street that will run from Hogan Street to the Sports & Entertainment District, near TIAA Bank Field, 121 Financial Field and the VyStar Veterans Memorial Area. Balfour Beatty explains it will leverage an integrated progressive design build (AV-DBOM) method and partner with Superior Construction Company Southeast, Beep, Inc., WGI, Inc., Stantec Consulting Services, Inc. and Miller Electric to deliver the project.

“We are honored to be selected by Jacksonville Transportation Authority to construct another successful project for the Jacksonville community,” said John Harris, senior vice president of Balfour Beatty’s Buildings operations in Florida. “To be a part of the Ultimate Urban Circulator program is an opportunity of a lifetime, and we look forward to remaining a relentless ally to our client, our partners and the community as we work to provide and innovative and revolutionary transportation network for the future of Jacksonville.”

JTA was awarded a $25-million Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD) grant in 2019 for the project. The remainder of the $44-million project is funded by local, in-kind and state sources.

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