November 12, 2019
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The Federal Transit Administration this week filed notice in the Federal Register to limit the number of projects that will be required to submit to its project management oversight.

[Above photo by the FTA.]

The agency said under its proposed rule that definition would shift from one based on the type of project or total project cost to one based on both the amount of Federal financial assistance and the total project cost; data points FTA views as “a more appropriate benchmark.”

Photo by the FTA

“FTA has become much more knowledgeable about the risks inherent in major capital projects, having conducted its own risk assessments since 2005,” the agency said in its filing. “FTA has also witnessed some project sponsors’ lack of management capacity and capability and appropriate project controls for some projects, and studied the reasons for cost and schedule changes on many major capital projects.”

The proposed rule would also increase that project cost “threshold” for all fixed guideway capital projects to $300 million or more and requires that said projects receive $100 million or more in Federal investment to be subject to project management oversight.

Under this default, the number of current projects undergoing project management oversight would decrease by forty-nine, out of a total of eighty-eight major capital projects under construction, allowing FTA to focus on higher-risk projects.

The rule changes being proposed by FTA would also bring its project management oversight duties “into compliance with recent statutory changes” by conducting oversight reviews on a quarterly basis – absent findings by the agency that a project require more frequent oversight – while applying project management oversight to major capital projects receiving Federal financial assistance under any provision of Federal law.

 

editor@aashto.org

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