Howard County has won three P3 Award wins for the new Howard County Circuit Courthouse project. Now in its sixth year, the P3 Awards is one of the largest events in the Americas recognizing and rewarding the best in public-private partnerships (P3) from around the world.
The awards were presented at The Liberty Warehouse, in New York. The entries for the 2019 P3 Awards were judged by a panel of more than 80 industry experts. The 238,000-square-foot Howard Country Circuit Courthouse will be completed through the first public-private partnership in Howard County, and resolve deficiencies in the existing Courthouse, which was built 175 years ago. The project will result in a more than 50% reduction of impervious surface and no existing trees will be removed, with over 100 new trees planted. The new Courthouse is scheduled to be completed in July 2021.
Gold – Best Social Infrastructure Project
The judges described the new courthouse as “a unique, one-of-a-kind project.” As the largest project in the history of the county, this was the first availability-payment structured municipal P3 to reach financial close in the United States outside of Long Beach, Calif. Factors that stood out during the judging process included the project’s well-structured procurement – 11 months from RFP to financial close – and innovative approaches to financing for the jurisdiction and size of the project. The project was also praised for its approach to design and sustainability.
Gold – Best Financial Structure (Social Infrastructure)
The project team was praised by the judges for “developing a workable and efficient structure” while being “creative and flexible in their approaches.”
Silver – Government Agency of the Year
“Howard County’s impressive submission provides a step-by-step ‘how-to’ guide for successfully executing a jurisdiction’s first P3,” said one judge. Another commented that Howard County’s accomplishments deserve all the recognition in light of the lack of jurisdictions pursuing P3s in the United States, and the uneven rate of success in completing P3s by those jurisdictions that choose to pursue the P3 model.