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The Illinois Tollway is seeking businesses for Landscape Improvements on the Reagan Memorial Tollway

Invitation to Bid
The Illinois Tollway is seeking businesses for Landscape Improvements on the Reagan Memorial Tollway (I-88) in Lee and Ogle County. This contract, RR-19-4468, was advertised on August 20, 2020.
Electronically submitted proposals will be accepted until 10:30 a.m. on October 1, 2020. Note: The Illinois Tollway will no longer accept manual, hard copy bid submissions.
This work is part of the Tollway’s 15-year, $14 billion capital program, Move Illinois: The Illinois Tollway Driving the Future.
Please note: When viewing this contract on the Tollway’s Plan Room, please reference contract number RR-19-4468. When viewing this contract on the BidBuy, please reference bid number 20-557THA-ENGCO-B-16974. For assistance contact the BidBuy Help Desk by email at il.bidbuy@illinois.gov or by phone at 866-455-2897 Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Bid Opening:
October 1, 2020
10:30 a.m.
Optional Pre-Bid Meeting:
August 27, 2020
9 a.m.
Register and Join

Study: Leasing the Illinois Tollway Could Generate Over $19 Billion

Illinois could use the money for needed transportation projects in the Rebuild Illinois Plan or reduce the state’s public pension debt. 

Los Angeles , 25 de ago (HINA) — A new Reason Foundation study finds Illinois could net between $14 billion and $24.5 billion by leasing the Illinois Tollway, giving the state much-needed money to fund other transportation projects or pay down growing public pension liabilities.
Using data from comparable long-term toll road leases worldwide, the Reason Foundation report estimates that the medium-range net proceeds (after paying off outstanding Illinois Tollway bonds) would be $19.4 billion for a 50-year lease of the Illinois Tollway. The state would likely be able to choose to receive that money in either a lump-sum up-front payment or annual lease payments.
Five U.S. toll roads have entered into long-term leases in recent years, including the Chicago Skyway and Indiana Toll Road. The Chicago Skyway lease is now held by a consortium of Canadian public pension funds and the Indiana Toll Road lease is held by a consortium of U.S. pension funds.
“Chicago paid off nearly $1 billion in debt with its Skyway lease proceeds, while Indiana fully funded a 10-year transportation improvement program,” said Robert Poole, author of the study and director of transportation at Reason Foundation. “Today, most toll road leases limit annual toll rate increases to the rate of inflation, so drivers shouldn’t fear that. The lease agreement would ensure meaningful state oversight of the toll rates and key performance indicators for the Illinois Tollway while providing greater accountability and transparency for the public and toll-payers.”

The study stresses that each state must determine the best uses for the money from a deal, but outlines three possible uses of the proceeds Illinois would receive from a long-term lease:

  • Funding major unfunded transportation needs, such as some of the $45 billion worth of projects in the 2019 Rebuild Illinois Plan.
  • Reducing state debt, with the aim of achieving a higher bond rating than the current BBB-, to permit financing at lower interest rates.
  • Reducing the unfunded liability of state public employee pension funds. The $19.4 billion net proceeds could cover 14 percent of these funds’ 2018 unfunded liabilities.
In 2019, Gov. J.B. Pritzker raised the idea of monetizing the Illinois Tollway to address the state’s public pension debt. Former Illinois State Senator Jeff Schoenberg, who was assistant majority leader, made a similar proposal, citing a Credit Suisse estimate suggesting a 75-year lease could generate gross proceeds of $23.8 billion, slightly less than the Reason Foundation study’s mid-range gross valuation of $25.8 billion.
“As an investor-financed business, a toll road company would likely speed up modernization efforts on the Illinois Tollway,” Poole said. “The state could also ensure there are significant penalties for failing to meet performance metrics and that the lease could be terminated if the company continually failed to measure up to expectations.”
  Many modern toll roads in Australia, France, Italy, Portugal, and Spain are operated under long-term public-private partnership (P3) leases. The report examines how these countries have utilized P3s, surveys the companies and investment funds that are most active in this sector, and reviews how to lease revenues can be put to use. The study provides estimates for the proceeds that nine state-owned toll road systems could generate via long-term leases.

Illinois Tollway upcoming events

alsh Community Series: Lunch and Learn (Accounting)
Thursday, June 13, 2019, noon to 1:30 p.m.
Walsh Construction 
307 S. Sangamon Street 
Chicago, IL 60607
Register now
Women Transportation Seminar (WTS) Special Reception Honoring Acting Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) Omer Osman

Thursday, June 13, 2019, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Old Crow Smokehouse River North
149 W. Kinzie Street
Chicago, IL 60654
Register now
Capital Development Board Construction and Design Business Outreach
Thursday, June 13, 2019, 9 to 11 a.m.
Burnham Center 
111 W. Washington Street, Suite 1212 
Chicago, IL 60602
Register now
Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) Hiring Event
Monday, June 17, 2019, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
New Faith Baptist Church International
25 Central Avenue 
Matteson, IL 60443
Register now
1871 + Illinois Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (IHCC) Latinx Incubator Showcase
Tuesday, June 18, 2019, 5:30 p.m.
1871 Auditorium 
222 Merchandise Mart Plaza, Suite 1212 
Chicago, IL 60654
Register now
Chicago Urban League (CUL) Hosts 6th Annual Citywide Job Fair
Tuesday, June 18, 2019, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
UIC (Dorin) Forum 
725 W. Roosevelt Road 
Chicago, IL 60608
Register now
U.S. Minority Contractors Association (USMCA) June B2B Meeting
Thursday, June 20, 2019, 9:30 to 11 a.m.
Steiner Security Main Office
13119 Rivercrest Drive 
Crestwood, IL 60418
Register now
National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) Annual Meeting and Leadership Installation
Thursday, June 20, 2019, 2:30-6 p.m.
McCormick & Schmick’s 
1 E. Wacker Drive 
Chicago, IL 60601
Register now
Hispanic American Construction Industry Association (HACIA) Contractors Committee Seminar Series: “I Want My Money! How Do I Get Paid? Don’t Work for Free!” Presented by Troy Radunsky
Thursday, June 20, 2019, 7 to 9 a.m.
650 W. Lake Street, Suite 110 
Chicago, IL 60661
Register now
Illinois Tollway ConstructionWorks Hosts Intro to Construction Trades Workshop
Friday, June 21, 2019, 9 a.m.
Southwest American Job Center at Daley College
7500 S. Pulaski Road, Building 100 
Chicago, IL 60652
Register now
Illinois Tollway ConstructionWorks Hosts Hiring Event Westside American Job Center
Friday, June 21, 2019, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Westside American Job Center
605 S. Albany Avenue 
Chicago, IL 60612
Register now
Tri-State Tollway (I-294)/I-57 Interchange Project Open House Meeting
Tuesday, June 25, 2019, 4 to 7 p.m.
Illinois Department of Employment Security 
South Suburban Cook County American Job Center
16845 S. Halsted Street 
Harvey, IL 60426
Comments and questions

José Alvarez named Executive Director of the Illinois Tollway

Downers Grove, Il- The Illinois Tollway Board of Directors, voted unanimously to hire veteran public servant, José Alvarez, as the agency’s new executive director. The Agency has a 1.5 billion annual budget.

Alvarez brings with him a wealth of administrative and government experience, including leadership positions at the highest levels of the public sector. In his role as executive director, Alvarez will lead the Illinois Tollway, which has a $1.5 billion annual budget and oversees Illinois’ 294-mile Tollway system.

“On behalf of my fellow board members, I’m excited to welcome José Alvarez as executive director,” said Tollway Board of Directors Chairman Will Evans.

“His extensive background in government administration for large, complex organizations such as the Chicago Housing Authority and Chicago Public Schools will provide a solid foundation to build upon as he leads the Illinois Tollway.”

Alvarez comes to the Tollway after having served in a multitude of public sector leadership roles, including chief of staff for the State Superintendent of Education for Washington D.C. Schools, deputy chief of staff for the CEO of Chicago Public Schools (CPS), and most recently, chief operating officer and chief of staff for the Chicago Housing Authority (CHA).

During his tenure at CHA, Alvarez presented balanced budgets for four consecutive years, secured over $1 billion in funding for mixed-income developments and developed a five-year capital plan for building and maintenance of facilities.

He also championed small and minority business participation in contracts through the Sec3 Job Order Contract Program aimed at driving small business participation and eliminated waivers for minority and women business enterprise contract requirements.

“I am honored and humbled by this vote of confidence by Chairman Evans and the Tollway’s Board of Directors. I’m looking forward to the challenge of leading a world-class toll highway system at a time when our infrastructure is at the forefront of our state’s agenda,” said Alvarez.

“We must continue to find new ways to help drive economic opportunity for all Illinoisans, and the Illinois Tollway plays a pivotal role in that effort.”

During his 13-year career at CPS, Alvarez held multiple roles geared toward community and stakeholder relations and was integral in the development of a rigorous strategic plan to support underperforming schools.

He also supported the Renaissance 2010 initiative aimed at developing accountability plans for CPS schools.

Alvarez is also a civic leader, serving as chairman of the local school council at the Andrew Jackson Language Academy, as vice chairman of La Casa Norte and as a member of the board of directors at Trinity High School in River Forest.

New Board to Lead Illinois Tollway

Springfield, Ill. — Governor JB Pritzker signed SB 1298 and appointed a new board of highly talented and experienced professionals to lead the Illinois Toll Highway Authority into the future.

“It is a new day for the Illinois Tollway,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “Our new leadership will uphold the highest ethical standards, deliver the value to taxpayers and serve Illinoisans in every corner of our state. I’m proud to usher in a new wave of transparency and accountability at this critical agency.”

   The nine new members include a Latino, Cesar Santoy, who is the principal of Studio ARQ, LLC and ARQ Design Build, Inc., architecture and construction firms that serve both the public and private sector clients as well as individual home and business owners.  Santoy has over 20 years of progressively responsible experience in architectural design, construction management and civic engagement. Santoy also serves as 5th Ward Alderman for the City of Berwyn and is active in a variety of professional and community organizations. He received his Bachelor of Architecture from the Illinois Institute of Technology and is a registered Architect in several states.

Below the other members:

Will Evans will serve as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Illinois Toll Highway Authority.* Evans has nearly 40 years of experience in strategic planning, operations, engineering, construction, large infrastructure projects, and major IT system implementations and has been in senior leadership for over 20 years. He is the former President of Peoples Gas and North Shore Gas, regulated natural gas utilities now owned by WEC Energy Group. Since retirement from Peoples Gas, Evans has been an energy and engineering consultant, serves as president of the Northwestern University Black Alumni Association and chairs the Chicago Commons board of directors and Skokie Board of Fire and Police Commissioners. He received his Master of Business Administration and Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering from Northwestern University.

Jim Connolly will serve on the Board of Directors of the Illinois Toll Highway Authority.* Connolly has been a proud member of the Laborers’ International Union of North America (“LiUNA”) for over 48 years. He currently serves as the business manager of the Chicago & Vicinity Laborers’ District Council and has held that position since he was first elected in March 2000.  Connolly proudly serves and fights to improve the lives of the 20,000 men and women who comprise the membership of the District Council’s 15 affiliated LiUNA Locals. He has worked with all levels of government, including serving on an advisory panel charged with overseeing the potential privatization of Midway International Airport. Connolly strives to bring Labor and Management together to promote the industries represented by the members of the Laborers’ District Council and the signatory contractors who employ them.

Stephen L. Davis will serve on the Board of Directors of the Illinois Toll Highway Authority.* Davis is the Founder and Chairman of The Will Group, a firm overseeing several construction, manufacturing, technology,  lighting, and energy industry companies. Since 2010, The Will Group has been recognized by Black Enterprise Magazine as one of the country’s Top 100 Black businesses. Davis has a passion for economic development and has been an active member of Chicago’s business community for several decades. He currently serves as the Commissioner of Aviation (Board Chair) of the DuPage Airport Authority and on the boards of the Trust Company of Illinois, PMI Energy Solutions, and Inland Real Estate Trust, specifically on Inland’s Audit and Compensation committees. He is also a member of the Business Leadership Council’s executive committee and the Chicago Regional Growth Corporation’s board of directors. Davis is the founder of the Tuskegee Next Foundation, whose goal is to graduate 100 pilots from at-risk communities. As of August 2018, the program has successfully graduated 33 cadets and 27 licensed pilots. Stephen and his wife Tanya have raised 8 children. Davis received his bachelor’s degree in Transportation and Materials from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville.

Alice Gallagher will serve on the Board of Directors of the Illinois Toll Highway Authority.* Gallagher has served as president of the Village of Western Springs since May 2017 after serving four years as a village trustee. Since becoming village president, she has served on the West Central Municipal Conference, as director of the executive committee, co-chair of the transportation committee and chair of the central council. Gallagher is an attorney by trade and served on the Western Springs School District 101 Board of Education. She received her Juris Doctor from the Seattle University School of Law and Bachelor of Arts from Miami University.

Karen McConnaughay will serve on the Board of Directors of the Illinois Toll Highway Authority.* McConnaughay served two terms as state senator of the 33rd District, where she was the Republican Minority Whip and the minority spokesperson for the Senate Transportation Committee. She also served on the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) Executive Board and International Relations Task Force. Prior to her election to the state senate, McConnaughay served as the County Board Chairman of Kane County from 2004 to 2012 where she achieved remarkable fiscal success  by lowering spending and reducing the size of government while bolstering accountability, efficiency and transparency, resulting in significant bond rating increases. Under her leadership, Kane County invested in major expansion and upgrades of county bridge and road systems, public transportation, 911 public safety and criminal justice facilities.

Scott Paddock will serve on the Board of Directors of the Illinois Toll Highway Authority.* Paddock has more than 20 years of industry experience in sales, marketing and general management. Since 2011, he has served as the president of the Chicagoland Speedway and Route 66 Raceway, the largest sports facility in the state of Illinois. In that role, he revamped their organizational structure, authoring strategic plan and cultural transformation to reposition enterprise for long-term success and year round relevance in the Chicago sports and entertainment landscape. Prior to joining Chicagoland Speedway, Paddock spent 12 years in marketing leadership positions at PepsiCo, including serving as the Director of Sports Marketing for Gatorade.  He also currently serves on the board of the Illinois Special Olympics, Silver Cross Health Systems, Will County Center for Economic Development and Chicago Sports Commission.  He received his Bachelor of Arts from the University of Notre Dame.

Gary Perinar will serve on the Board of Directors of the Illinois Toll Highway Authority.* Perinar currently serves as executive secretary-treasurer for the over 30,000 members of the Chicago Regional Council of Carpenters. Perinar is a third-generation business representative of the union and a 40-year member of Carpenters Local 174 where he served his apprenticeship. At age 32, he became a full-time business representative and later an assistant to the president/EST. Perinar was twice elected as the second vice president of the Regional Council and has served under four ESTs. He has also served as a delegate for 25 years and held the position of trustee on various committees and boards including health and welfare and pension funds during this period. Perinar was the 2018 recipient of the esteemed George Meany Award which is a National Recognition by the Boy Scouts of America Pathway to Adventure Council. The award is presented to an individual who has made a significant contribution to the youth of the community.

Jim Sweeney will serve on the Board of Directors of the Illinois Toll Highway Authority.* Sweeney is the president-business manager of International Union of Operating Engineers Local 150. He joined the union in 1978 and worked for contractors on sewer, slag, paving and deep tunnel projects. Since Sweeney joined Local 150 in 1987, the union’s membership doubled from less than 10,000 to more than 23,000. He has been president-business manager since 2008 and steered Local 150 through the recession while maintaining wage and benefit levels and implementing temporary healthcare subsidies and the Local 150 Food Bank to offer assistance to members in need. Sweeney served on the tollway board under Gov. Quinn from 2011 to 2015 where he advocated for the efficient modernization of the nation’s most advanced network of toll roads.