2012-2014 BDCP Blog


Click here to contact us with your questions or comments about the BDCP Blog.

Go Back

Principles for Sharing Design and Construction Oversight for Proposed New Water Facilities

By Nancy Vogel

California Department of Water Resources

If the Bay Delta Conservation Plan is approved, public water agencies and the State of California will embark on one of the largest infrastructure modernization projects in the country.  The currently proposed project includes three new Sacramento River intakes and 30-mile long, large diameter tunnels with a price tag of $14.5 billion.  It is the first significant local investment in statewide water infrastructure since the construction of the State Water Project in the 1960s. 


When it comes to the design and construction of any new water facilities, the California Department of Water Resources and public water agencies share an interest in ensuring a high quality project and controlling the cost of its delivery.  To do so, leaders of DWR and the public water agencies set forth principles that would establish accountability and transparency, protect the large public investment at stake, and give an oversight role to the agencies whose ratepayers would fund the new water conveyance system.  DWR would maintain its ultimate authority and responsibility to manage the design and construction. 


Eventually, these principles will be developed into a legal agreement between DWR and a new Joint Powers Authority (JPA) of state and federal water contractors that would prescribe the roles, responsibilities, and authorities of the newly created DWR Design and Construction Enterprise (DCE) to carry out the project.  And, with many design elements of importance to local communities situated near the project footprint still to be determined, the DCE would become the lead interface with local governments and the public about design and construction impacts. Read the memo about DWR’s establishment of the DCE here.


The public comment period on the draft Bay Delta Conservation Plan and the associated draft Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement is open until June 13.  For more information about the plan and to learn how to comment, go to http://baydeltaconservationplan.com/2013-2014PublicReview.aspx.

Facebook Twitter DZone It! Digg It! StumbleUpon Del.icio.us NewsVine Reddit Blinklist Add diigo bookmark