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The assistance to SAVE for “Marco Polo” airport successfully ended

SAVE and the ATI Maltauro-Itinera have signed the contract for the renovation of the flight infrastructures at the “Marco Polo” airport in Tessera (Venice). The Contec Group, specifically Pronext and Contec AQS, provided assistance to SAVE Project Manager to manage this relevant and sensitive tender.

This service to the contracting authority involved legal, administrative, technical, strategic and managerial skills, that made possible to close the tender procedure on time and without any complaints.

“The expansion and renovation of the flight infrastructures at the Marco Polo airport in Venice is the largest intervention ever realised in European airports: an amount of € 122 million and 669 days of work on the runways, active and functioning during the works”. Stefano Lappa – CEO of Pronext, the Group company specialized in technical and legal assistance to the contracting authorities – tells the path made with SAVE (https://www.veniceairport.it/il-gruppo-save.html) in the last months until the awarding of the works.

“Considering the complexity of the contract, the SAVE Project Manager asked us to support them in the tender operations for the choice of a companies, able to face this challenge with large technical, organizational and financial guarantees. Moreover it was necessary to select it in a tight time, avoiding protests as much as possible”.

 

Critical aspects

Lappa observes: “The first problem did not take long to emerge: how is it possible to make a selection in a sector (public tenders) aimed at the maximum participation of companies? There are two equally important but incompatible principles.
The fact of operating in a special sector, such as the airport, helped; as well as operating on a contract exceeding 100 million. In these cases, the legislative decree n. 50/2016 allows exceptions and additions to give the contracting entities greater freedom in defining the procedures. We drew up a two-stage procedure with negotiated procedure (selection of competitors and evaluation of offers). Moreover we identified high participation requirements and detailed selection criteria: specific experiences about operational flight infrastructures, flight infrastructures in general and, lastly, infrastructures dedicated to transport”.

This approach allowed to consider only 3 participants, including foreigners. Lappa adds: “On the other hand, the intervention on an airport in operation is not everyday, especially with investments of that scale. In this case, the mere formal ability to do a job was not enough guarantee for who based on that intervention their investments and activities for the next 10 years”.

 

The strategy of the competition was drawn up: after, the practice came

“In addition to having to choose a companies that was able to manage a site of that capacity while more than 20 million passengers pass on the runway, we had to respect the mandatory deadline (September 1) for the opening of the site.
Overcoming that date would have meant taking the schedules and business plans of the entire airport and throwing them in the trash.

It is easy to imagine the turnover generated in a single day by a premium airport such as the airport of Venice and therefore the prescribed times did not consider an alternative plan.

Opening the construction site in September meant arriving at the final adjudication by early August and, above all, developing an irreproachable procedure, which did not offer pretexts for disputes and appeals that would have made useless every effort. All this, considering that we started working in January.
Therefore we took a small risk, that is to use as much time as possible for the study of every detail of the tender, without the hurry to publish the invitation. We thought slowly and then acted quickly: this has rewarded us”.

 

The two-stage tender

Lappa continues: “About the first phase of selection we have already described the setting while in the second we had to determine the best offer.
About the technical offer we envisaged a dense network of elements and sub-elements of assessment that, without asking for improvements or variations, or discounts on timing, asked for an effective analysis of the project and the presentation of organizational solutions aimed at minimizing the impact on flight activities, adequate guarantees on procurement management and logistics (probably the entire production of bituminous conglomerates in the North East will be occupied), an ordering organization chart that includes figures with relevant experience in all the key roles, starting from the project manager. In addition we asked to organize the return of the as-built elaborations according to the BIM methods, to allow SAVE to implement its information archive with all the useful information for the management of the infrastructure over the years”.

“We requested that the companies presented preliminary contracts with suppliers and a bank guarantee of 10% of the total value of the contract. A very challenging tender for companies – I have to be honest – but the stakes were worth some extra precautions”.

In the tender operations, Pronext and Contec AQS provided assistance to the Project Manager in every step, document, report: working directly to the draft or verifying the work of the SAVE offices. They participated in each session, as well as organizing regular meetings for agreement on decisions, documents and choices to do. They worked on every detail of the requests for clarification, to allow the competitors to have an effective support from the contracting authority, to clarify any doubt and not give rise to recriminations.

 

The satisfaction

Satisfaction is evident in the words of the Pronext spokesperson.
“The result is a plan precisely respected, a contract signed the day before the scheduled, a procedure without hitches and contestations by the non-awarded competitors. So SAVE could respect its business plan and work on the largest of its tenders without consequences on the ordinary activities of its tender and legal offices. They are responsible not of choosing us as consultants but of realizing that good external support could have more than proportional consequences on their activities”.

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