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Construction Contracting Information

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  • Types of Construction Projects
  • Major Construction Procurement Timeline
  • Additional Resources

Types of Construction Projects

There are two major kinds of Construction Contracts at the Port:

  1. Major Public Works
  2. Small Works for Projects less than $350,000 (which includes contracts under $40k where contractors are contacted directly)

Major Construction Contracts can be further sorted out into the following types

  • Major Construction Design Bid Build
    Project to be designed by an architect or engineer, solicits bids or quotes from interested contractors, awards the contract to the responsible bidder with the lowest responsive bid, and then the contractor builds the project according to the plans and specifications provided by the municipality.
    Primes make WMBE project specific commitment and submit Inclusion Plans.

  • Major Construction Unit Price (or "On Call")
    Contracts for an unknown number of small public works projects over a fixed period of time also known as “indefinite quantity, indefinite frequency”. Unit price contracts are not associated with a particular project, do not guarantee any amount of work, and do not establish a total dollar value (although the contract may cap the dollar value at a certain level over the life of the contract). Instead, the agency agrees to pay a defined “unit price” for certain types of anticipated (but unplanned) work or trades over a certain time period.

  • Alternative Public Works Design Build
    One firm is selected to both design and construct a public works project. Public agencies may use the design-build procedures where the total project is over $2 million, and where 1) the construction activities are highly specialized, 2) the projects selected provide opportunity for greater efficiencies between designer and the builder; or 3) significant savings in project delivery time would be realized.

    A request for qualifications (RFQ) and request for proposal (RFP) process shall be used, with the RFQ containing the project description and evaluation factors and weighting, among other things. An evaluation committee selects finalists and then asks for final proposals (including but not limited to price-related factors) from the finalists who are entitled to receive an honorarium. The public agency may accept best and final proposals from the finalists after the final proposals have been submitted.

    Primes are evaluated on past project WMBE efforts and current project commitment and attainment plan

  • Alternative Public Works BES

  • Alternative Public Works General Contractor/Construction Manager (GC/CM)
    Under the GC/CM method, a public agency selects the contractor early on in the design process, usually no later than the end of the schematic design phase. The contractor is selected partially based on qualifications in response to a Request for Proposals (RFP), partially based on the results of an interview (not required by state law, but an effective tool and used by most agencies), and partially based on their bid for limited costs for the project. Contractors submit a bid price for their Percent Fee (overhead and profit) and a fixed amount for specified general conditions work.
    At least 70% of the MACC instead of using the acronym please spell out MACC must be subcontracted. All subcontract work (and equipment and material purchases) competitive low bid​. Alternative subcontractor selection process for work that exceeds $3M.

  • Alternative Public Works Job Order Contract (JOC)
    Job Order Contracting is a method of obtaining construction services for smaller projects through the use of an indefinite quantity delivery order contract over a fixed period of time. Prices for each work order are based on an established price book.

    The Job Order Contract prime subcontracts at least 90% of the “work”​. DBE Goal(s) = range from 5% to 6.3%​ and may also include WMBE Aspirational Goals​. The Port of Seattle's current Job Order Contract contractor is Centennial. Please contact them at with a cc to 

Major Construction Procurement Timeline

  1. Advertisement
    All major construction projects are advertised in the Daily Journal of Commerce, as well as posted on VendorConnect with e-mail notifications sent to registered contractors in applicable NAICS codes. Small Works projects are not advertised and firms that have registered on VendorConnect and selected to be on the “Small Works" Roster will be notified of construction bid opportunities for the NAICS codes associated with their business.
  2. Pre-Bid Meeting
    Major Construction min. 8 days after advertisement, Small Works 7 days
    This meeting briefs prospective bidders and explains complicated specifications and requirements to you as early as possible after the invitation has been issued and before the bids are opened.
  3. Bid Opening
    Major Construction min 31 days after advertisement, Small Works 14 days
    This is the time when sealed bids received by the Port are opened and examined.
  4. Statement of Qualifications/Proposal
    6 to 8 weeks from advertisement
  5. Award - Notice of Intent to Award
    4 to 20 days
  6. Execute Contract
    Major construction 16 days after award; Small Works 11 days; DB/BES GC/CM 30 days

Additional Resources

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