January 24, 2008

REPORT OF THE BUILDING AND OPERATING COMMITTEE

 

Honorable Board of Directors
Golden Gate Bridge, Highway
  and Transportation District

Honorable Members:

A meeting of the Building and Operating Committee was held in the Board Room, Administration Building, Toll Plaza, San Francisco, California, on Thursday, January 24, 2008, at 10:00 a.m., Chair Eddie presiding.

Committee Members Present (7): Chair Eddie; Vice Chair Reilly; Directors Boro, Hernández, Middlebrook and Stroeh; President Moylan (Ex Officio)

Committee Members Absent (1): Director Ammiano

Other Directors Present (1): Director Cochran

Staff Present: General Manager Celia G. Kupersmith; District Engineer Denis J. Mulligan; Auditor-Controller Joseph M. Wire; Secretary of the District Janet S. Tarantino; Attorney David J. Miller; Deputy General Manager/Bridge Division Kary H. Witt; Deputy General Manager/Bus Division Susan C. Chiaroni; Deputy General Manager/Ferry Division James P. Swindler; Public Affairs Director Mary C. Currie; Assistant Clerk of the Board Karen B. Engbretson

Visitors Present: None

 

       
1.

Authorize Award of Contract No. 2008-B-7, Air Compressors, to Volvo Road Machinery, Inc., dba Volvo Construction Equipment Services

In a report to Committee, Deputy General Manager/Bridge Division Kary Witt and General Manager Celia Kupersmith reported on staff’s recommendation to replace two portable air compressors used to supply utility air for maintenance work on the Golden Gate Bridge. The report stated that the current air compressors are old and obsolete, and will be replaced with new Tier 3 diesel air compressors that are compliant with California Air Resources Board and Bay Area Air Quality Management District regulations.


The report also stated that staff prepared plans and specifications for Contract No. 2008-B-7, Air Compressors, and advertised for bids. On Wednesday, January 2, 2008, two bids were received and publicly read. The report further stated that staff, the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Program Administrator and the Attorney evaluated the bids and concluded that the apparent low bidder Volvo Road Machinery, Inc., dba Volvo Construction Equipment Services, has properly submitted all required documents and that its bid is technically responsive to the specifications. Since there are no subcontracting opportunities for this contract, no DBE participation is anticipated during the performance of the contract. The DBE Program office has determined that Volvo Road Machinery, Inc., dba Volvo Construction Equipment Services is not a certified DBE.

This project is included in the FY 07/08 Bridge Division Capital Budget and is 100% District funded. Requisite funds are available to support award of this contract in the amount of $124,015.50. A copy of the report is available from the Office of the District Secretary and on the District’s web site.

Staff recommended and the Committee concurred by motion made and seconded by Directors STROEH/MOYLAN to forward the following recommendation to the Board of Directors for its consideration:

RECOMMENDATION

The Building and Operating Committee recommends that the Board of Directors authorize award of Contract No. 2008-B-7, Air Compressors, to Volvo Road Machinery, Inc., dba Volvo Construction Equipment Services, San Leandro, CA, in the amount of $174,421.22, to provide two Tier 3 diesel air compressors;, with the understanding that requisite funds (100% District) are available in the FY 07/08 Bridge Division Capital Budget.

Action by the Board at its meeting of January 25, 2008 – Resolution
NON-CONSENT CALENDAR

AYES (7): Chair Eddie; Vice Chair Reilly; Directors Boro, Hernández, Middlebrook and Stroeh; President Moylan (Ex Officio)
NOES (0): None
ABSENT (1): Director Ammiano

       
2.

Authorize Execution of Supplement No. 1 to Change Order No. 2, Relative to Contract No. 2007-B-4, Golden Gate Bridge, North Approach Viaduct Suspended Maintenance Scaffolding System, with Safway Services, Inc., for Additional Lift Platform Rental Charges

In a report to Committee, Deputy District Engineer Ewa Bauer, District Engineer Denis Mulligan and General Manager Celia Kupersmith provided staff’s recommendation to authorize execution of Supplement No. 1 to Change Order No. 2 Relative to Contract No. 2007-B-4, Golden Gate Bridge, North Approach Viaduct Suspended Maintenance Scaffolding System.

The report stated that the Board of Directors, by Resolution No. 2006-086 at its November 17, 2006, meeting, authorized the award of Contract No. 2007-B-4, in the amount of $1,459,609.50, to Safway Services Inc. Contract No. 2007-B-4 provided for the purchase of a 66,000 square foot suspended platform system to facilitate planned painting of the North Approach Viaduct superstructure. Erection of the platform system and subsequent painting operations were to be performed by District personnel.

The report also stated that the platform system consists of approximately 225 tons of modular components. This Contract did not include provisions for hoisting the components from the ground to the underside of the viaduct superstructure and the District did not have the means readily available to perform this work. As a result of this change, Change Order No. 2 was executed in the amount of $41,837.55, to provide a specialized lifting platform for District forces to use for hoisting the platform system components. The report further stated that Change Order No. 2 was written for a term of three months and included a provision for additional weekly rental of the lifting platform, should it take longer than three months to hoist all of the components. Due to wind and other weather related conditions, it took an additional seven weeks to complete the hoisting work. The additional rental cost associated with the additional seven weeks is $11,235, resulted in a total amount of $53,072.55 for Change Order No. 2. In accordance with the District’s Procurement Manual, approval by the Board is required for change orders exceeding $50,000. Staff recommends execution of Supplement No. 1 to Change Order No. 2 relative to Contract No. 2007-B-4, to pay for this additional lifting platform rental cost. A copy of the report is available from the Office of the District Secretary and on the District’s web site.

At the meeting, Denis Mulligan summarized the staff report, noting that as an added precaution in light of the August 1, 2007, collapse of the I-35W Mississippi River Bridge in Minnesota, District staff performed a detailed structural analysis of the North Approach Viaduct to ensure sufficient safety factors were in place while District forces hoisted the platform system components onto the Golden Gate Bridge structure.

Staff recommended and the Committee concurred by motion made and seconded by Directors STROEH/HERNÁNDEZ to forward the following recommendation to the Board of Directors for its consideration:

RECOMMENDATION

The Building and Operating Committee recommends that the Board of Directors authorize execution of Supplement No. 1 to Change Order No. 2, relative to Contract No. 2007 B-4, Golden Gate Bridge, North Approach Viaduct Suspended Maintenance Scaffolding System, with Safway Services Inc., in the amount of $11,235, for additional lift platform rental charges;, with the understanding that requisite funds (100% District) are available in the FY 07/08 Bridge Division Capital Budget.

Action by the Board at its meeting of January 25, 2008 – Resolution
NON-CONSENT CALENDAR

AYES (7): Chair Eddie; Vice Chair Reilly; Directors Boro, Hernández, Middlebrook and Stroeh; President Moylan (Ex Officio)
NOES (0): None
ABSENT (1): Director Ammiano

       
3.

Approve Actions Relative to Ferry Emission Standards for the New High-Speed Replacement Ferry Vessel

In a report to Committee, Deputy General Manager/Ferry Division James Swindler and General Manager Celia Kupersmith reported on staff’s recommendation relative to ferry emission standards for the District’s new high-speed replacement ferry vessel. The report provided information regarding current ferry emission standards (both state and federal), options for propulsion equipment to be considered for the new ferry vessel and recommendations on what type of engines and clean air technologies should be included in the procurement process for the new ferry vessel.

The report stated that the Board of Directors, by Resolution No. 2006-052 at its June 23, 2006, meeting, authorized staff to develop a Request for Proposals (RFP), using a competitive negotiation process, for the purchase of a high-speed, 499-passenger-capacity vessel as a replacement for one of the existing Spaulding vessels. The Board also directed that the new ferry vessel must meet all state and federal environmental requirements, including those of the California Air Resources Board (CARB) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Subsequently, the Board, by Resolution No. 2007-020 at its March 23, 2007, meeting, awarded a professional services agreement to Marty Robbins, of Fast Ferry Management, Inc., relative to RFP No. 2007-FT-8, Consultant to Provide Project Management and Construction Oversight for New High-Speed Passenger Ferry. As part of his work associated with RFP No. 2007-FT-8, Mr. Robbins conducted a review of current and pending state and federal ferry emission regulations, and also researched available engines and technologies for consideration on the new vessel.

The report described a presentation and discussion regarding ferry emission standards that took place at the July 13, 2007, meeting of the Board of Directors, in response to questions raised by the public and by Board members as to whether the new vessel should be built to a standard that exceeds current state and federal ferry emission standards. The staff report and associated documents presented at the July 13, 2007, meeting were attached to the report.

The report provided the status of state and federal regulations pertaining to ferry vessel emissions, noting that the current EPA regulations mandate that any ferry vessel built at this time must install a Tier 2 engine, the cleanest engine currently available. The report provided background regarding CARB regulations pertaining to ferry vessels and other harbor craft. The report stated that in the summer of 2007, CARB had initially considered a proposed ferry emission standard that would have required vessels to achieve an additional 85 percent reduction in emissions with a Tier 2 engine, a requirement that would have necessitated the use of Selective Catalytic Recovery (SCR) equipment. After holding several public hearings and further investigating the use of SCR equipment on small ferry vessels, CARB officials removed the 85 percent reduction requirement. The report described the current CARB regulations, adopted in November 2007, which require that ferry vessels constructed after January 2009 must use Best Available Control Technology (BACT), in addition to installing a Tier 2 engine.

The report also provided details regarding the current available technology for ferry emission reduction equipment, engines and alternative fuels, such as Biodiesel. The report included a chart that compared the Tier 2 and Tier 2-20 engines with and without the use of a 20 percent blend of Biodiesel, a blend known as “B20”. The report stated that, given that the effect on total emissions gets worse with utilization of B20, it is recommended that the District experiment with a lesser percentage of Biodiesel, using a blend that ranges between 2 and 5 percent.

The report also discussed the three optional pathways that the District could follow for the new ferry vessel procurement, as follows:


Option “A” – Comply with Current EPA and CARB Regulations and Install Tier 2 Engine;
Option “B” – Exceed Current EPA and CARB Regulations by Installing Tier 2-20 Engine and Experimenting with Biodiesel (2 to 5% mixtures); and,
Option “C” – Exceed EPA and CARB Regulations by Installing Tier 2 Engine and SCR After-Treatment Equipment

The report also provided a table comparing the relative costs of the above-listed three options, showing the estimated yearly increase in costs, as well as the estimated operating costs over ten years, the likely useful life of the ferry engines. In conclusion, the report stated that staff recommends that the actions outlined in Option “B” be implemented in conjunction with the new vessel procurement. By installing the Tier 2-20 engines, the District will assist in moving the engine technology forward by being an early adopter of this developmental version of the Tier 3 engines required in 2014. Additionally, undertaking a Biodiesel experiment will allow the District to test the viability of Biodiesel and its applicability to all vessels in the District’s ferry fleet.

At the meeting, Celia Kupersmith provided a brief introduction to initiate the discussion regarding ferry emission standards for the District’s new high-speed replacement ferry vessel. James Swindler summarized the staff report, providing additional details regarding ferry emission standards and technology. He noted that in the months following the July 13, 2007, meeting of the Board of Directors, staff has gathered additional information on the available technology for main engines and ferry emissions after treatment systems, as well as the use of Biodiesel on ferry vessels. He explained the changes in the CARB regulations and how the use of CARB’s BACT process starting in 2009 will promote the development of more creative methods to achieve emission reductions.

Mr. Swindler also stated that after further investigation and analysis, it was determined that the reason the SCR equipment failed on the Vallejo Baylink (Vallejo) ferry was basically due to vibration, excessive heat and saltwater intrusion. In addition, use of the SCR equipment also caused excessive exhaust backpressure, resulting in accelerated wear and damage to the main engines. He noted that the SCR equipment on the Vallejo ferry is no longer operating, and that some of the components have been removed to reduce the vessel weight and reduce fuel consumption. He also stated that in November 2007, staff traveled to New York to view the Staten Island Ferry vessel, the Alice Austin, the only other ferry vessel in the United States that is operating with SCR equipment. He stated that the Alice Austin is very large, with a passenger capacity of 1280, and is therefore not comparable to the much smaller, high-speed passenger ferry vessels operated by the District.

Mr. Swindler also provided information regarding the present and future main engine technology available for ferry vessels. He explained that the Tier 2 engine is the type of main engine that complies with current EPA and CARB standards, and that the Tier 3 engine will be required to be installed on ferry vessels after 2014. He stated that the Tier 2-20 engine that staff is recommending for the new ferry vessel is basically the Tier 3 engine in early development. Staff has confirmed with the engine manufacturer that four of these Tier 2-20 engines will be available to the District for the new ferry vessel, which engines will provide a significant improvement in emission reduction over the regular Tier 2 engine.

Discussion ensued, including the following:

  • Director Reilly made the following inquiries:
    • She inquired as to why the Water Emergency Transit Agency (WETA) has ordered ferry vessels with the SCR equipment, considering all of the problems that have been experienced with the SCR equipment. In response, Mr. Swindler stated that WETA’s enabling legislation requires them to meet the requirement to achieve an 85% reduction in ferry emissions, and that currently, the SCR equipment is the only available technology that will achieve the 85% reduction.
    • She inquired regarding the difference in Options B and C. In response, Ms. Kupersmith explained that staff is recommending Option B because it would be more prudent for the District to invest in technology that staff believes will work, such as the Tier 2-20 engine and Biodiesel, rather than invest a significantly higher amount of money in technology that may not work, such as SCR equipment. She noted that in the long run, the Bay Area region would benefit from the practical experience to be gained by the use of many different clean air technologies by various ferry operators on the San Francisco Bay.
  • Director Stroeh made the following comments and inquiries:
    • He inquired as to whether the new high-speed ferry engines could be modified if necessary to accommodate installation of emission-reduction equipment in the future. In response, Mr. Swindler stated that certain modifications would be possible, but that weight constraints would have to be taken into consideration. He added that staff was encouraged to learn from the engine manufacturer that it appears that the Tier 2-20 engines are going to have more power than is actually needed, which may offset some of the weight sensitivity of the ferry vessel.
    • He commented that given the inherent flexibility with the use of the Tier 2-20 engines, he supports the staff recommendation.
  • Director Middlebrook made the following comments and inquiries:
    • She inquired about the long-standing goal to have interchangeability of parts and equipment for the District’s Golden Gate Ferry fleet. In response, Mr. Swindler stated that the M.V. Mendocino is currently being re-powered with an MTU/Detroit engine, the same type of engine that will likely be installed on the new ferry vessel, which allow the District to meet is goal of interchangeability of spare parts and equipment.
    • She inquired as to whether there would be an increase in the 10-year costs associated with the two older high-speed ferry vessels that are being re-powered. In response, Mr. Swindler explained that the change from a lower tier to a higher tier ferry engine results in an increase in fuel consumption; therefore, there will be a slight incremental increase in operating costs, particularly for fuel.
  • Director Hernández inquired as to whether the District will be eligible for clean air grants as a result of its taking part in innovative ferry emission and fuel technology, which grants could possibly offset the increased operating costs. In response, Mr. Swindler stated that CARB staff has offered to provide funding to the District to perform in-service monitoring of the new ferry vessel, but that staff has not yet pursued seeking grants from other agencies that could offset operating costs. He stated that staff would investigate if such potential grants are available to the District.
  • Director Cochran made the following inquiries:
    • He inquired as to the horsepower of the new ferry engines. In response, Marty Robbins explained that the current ferry engines are approximately 1,500-1,600 horsepower, and that with the new engines, he believes it would increase to nearly 2,000 horsepower.
    • He inquired as to the type of engines in the existing high-speed ferry vessels. In response, Mr. Robbins stated that the M.V. Mendocino will be re-powered from a Tier 1 engine to the Tier 2 engine, and that the M.V. Del Norte currently has a Tier 0 engine. Mr. Swindler noted that the engines on the M.V. Del Norte are scheduled to be re-powered in 2009.
  • Director Boro made the following comments and inquiries:
    • He inquired as to whether staff had contacted environmental activists, such as the Friends of the Earth/Blue Water Network, regarding the District’s proposed recommendation. In response, Mr. Swindler stated that he had spoken with the Friends of the Earth/Blue Water Network to discuss staff’s recommendation regarding ferry emission standards for the new ferry vessel, and that they had some questions about the District’s recommendation to use Biodiesel. In addition, Mr. Swindler spoke with CARB representatives and discussed staff’s recommendation.
    • He inquired as to whether the new ferry vessel will comply with the new ferry emission standards that will go into effect in 2009. In response, Mr. Swindler answered in the affirmative, noting that the only difference is that in 2009, ferry operators will be required to go through the BACT process and seek CARB approval for any proposed ferry emission reduction technology.
  • Chair Eddie commented that it is remarkable that one must consume more fuel in order to reduce ferry emissions and pollution. He also noted the vast difference in cost between Option A, with estimated 10-year operating costs of $900,000, and Option C using SCR equipment, with estimated 10-year operating costs of $7.8 million.

Staff recommended and the Committee concurred by motion made and seconded by Directors STROEH/MIDDLEBROOK to forward the following recommendation to the Board of Directors for its consideration:

RECOMMENDATION

The Building and Operating Committee recommends that the Board of Directors approve the following actions relative to ferry emission standards for the procurement of a new high-speed replacement ferry vessel:

  a.
Approve installation of Tier 2-20 engines in the new ferry vessel, which engines exceed current federal Environmental Protection Agency and state California Air Resources Board requirements; and,
  b.

Approve testing Biodiesel fuel in the new ferry vessel, as well as preparing status reports on the testing results in order to analyze the possibility of expanding this type of fuel to all other ferry vessels in the District’s Golden Gate Ferry fleet.

Action by the Board at its meeting of January 25, 2008 – Resolution
NON-CONSENT CALENDAR

       
  AYES (7): Chair Eddie; Vice Chair Reilly; Directors Boro, Hernández, Middlebrook and Stroeh; President Moylan (Ex Officio)
NOES (0): None
ABSENT (1): Director Ammiano
       
4.

Status Report from District Appointees on Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit (SMART) Board

The Committee was provided with a copy of the agenda for the October 17, 2007, meeting and the minutes of the September 19, 2007, meeting of the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District (SMART). Copies of these items are available in the Office of the District Secretary, as well as on the District’s web site.

At the meeting, Chair Eddie, one of the members of the SMART Board of Directors (SMART Board), reported on items discussed at the January 16, 2008, meeting of the SMART Board. Chair Eddie stated that a status report on flooding from the recent storms was provided at the meeting, and that there had been minimal damage to SMART facilities.

Director Boro, another member of the SMART Board, stated that Chris Coursey, SMART’s new Community Outreach and Public Information Manager, has prepared several “White Papers,” that are intended to answer key questions that have been posed regarding SMART’s proposed rail service. He stated that approximately 15 White Papers will be issued in the coming months and distributed to elected officials and the public in the North Bay in anticipation of the SMART ballot initiative proposed for the November 2008 ballot.

Action by the Board – None Required

       
5.

Status Report on Engineering Projects

In a memorandum to Committee, Deputy District Engineer Ewa Z. Bauer, District Engineer Denis Mulligan and General Manager Celia Kupersmith reported on current engineering projects. A copy of the report is available in the Office of the District Secretary and on the District’s web site.

Discussion ensued, including the following:

  • Director Hernández inquired regarding the bid opening date for Contract No. 2006-B-1, Golden Gate Bridge Seismic Retrofit Phase IIIA, North Anchorage Housing/North Pylon. In response, Mr. Mulligan stated that the bid opening for Contract No. 2006-B-1 has been postponed to February 19, 2008, due in part to requests from potential bidders for more time to prepare bids. He stated that staff recognizes the importance of providing an opportunity for as many bidders as possible to submit bids, because increased competition could result in lower bid prices.

Action by the Board – None Required

       
6.

Public Comment

There was no public comment.

       
7.

Adjournment

All business having been concluded, the meeting was declared adjourned at 10:35 a.m.


       

Respectfully submitted,

/s/ James C. Eddie, Chair
Building and Operating Committee