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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Filtration Contractor Bails Out

The water filtration plant project may be heading toward disaster.

You know that giant hole in Van Cortlandt Park where there used to be grass, trees and a golf driving range? Well, there may not be anybody around to fill it.

Yesterday, the DEP confirmed that the contractor for building the filtration plant, a consortium led by Perini Corp. that won the bid last fall, bowed out, two months after it was supposed to begin work. The New York Post first reported this on Sunday.

Our story on this is coming out in Thursday's issue. Meanwhile, NewYorkBusiness.com reported yesterday that the city's Department of Investigation was looking into the Perini consortium, which may have been a reason why they dropped out. According to the report, the DOI had "qualms about violations involving Perini's meeting targets for subcontracts with minority- and women-owned business enterprises; the company was convicted in California in 2001 of making fraudulent MWBE claims."

Any company that is awarded a city contract must make a concerted effort to subcontract minority- and women-owned businesses as per city policy.

At the very least, this means the $2 billion project will cost another $200 million.


  1. Does this mean they haven't even started building the actual filtration plant? If not, is there any hope at all of taking this opportunity to get them to switch the technology to membrane filtration which is cheaper and more environmentally friendly? All this talk by Bloomberg of greening the City and we can't make this one change?

    That added $200+M will all get paid by water rate payers, and eventually by renters in the form of larger rent hikes.

  2. That is correct, Greg. The first contract was for digging the giant hole. This contract was for building the actual plant.


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