COVID-19 AND THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY

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Howard Franklin Bridge Construction to Speed Up

The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) has announced that it will be accelerating critical construction projects across the state. Among these projects is the much anticipated Howard Frankland Bridge project. In this brief article, the Tampa construction lawyers with Cotney Construction Law will discuss this $864 million infrastructure project. Although the project has cleared many obstacles, it must still contend with hazardous roadways and the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). 

The Plan

As the Tampa Bay Times reports, construction on the Howard Franklin Bridge project will be accelerated by four weeks and will begin later this year. The project entails building an eight-lane bridge to replace the aging northbound span of the current bridge. Local officials have been trying to for years to get a project like this off the ground, and it looks like they finally have their chance. 

Although the project is being accelerated, contractors should still have enough time to adequately study the design and prepare for construction. This is a critical process, as so many of these early decisions can have repercussions down the line. For assistance ensuring that your project is on the right track, consult a Tampa construction lawyer

Related: The Importance of the Pre-Estimating Process For Project Bidding

The Challenge

Even with the project being pushed up, the new bridge isn’t expected to open until 2025. During this five-year period, crews will encounter a number of safety concerns. In the immediate future, construction crews will have to comply with COVID-19 guidelines put forth by the CDC and OSHA, including requirements to maintain social distancing standards; clean and sanitize tools, surfaces, and portable toilets; and isolate sick workers. And as stay-at-home orders are lifted, crews will have to once again deal with working alongside dangerous traffic. These are challenges, no doubt, but they are challenges that must nonetheless be overcome by construction contractors that work on the Howard Frankland Bridge project and similar infrastructure projects. 

Related: Tampa Construction Companies Must Abide By Safety Rules or Risk Being Shut Down 

The Solution

Construction companies will encounter legal challenges before, during, and long after procuring infrastructure contracts. These contracts can be incredibly lucrative for companies with the resources to see them through to the end. Unfortunately, many companies push forward without a partner to protect them from legal threats. If your company has been contracted to work on an infrastructure project during these uncertain times, work with a law firm that can answer any and all your questions with regards to contract drafting, delays, safety, and any construction-related legal concern. Work with a law firm like Cotney Construction Law. 

If you would like to speak with one of our Tampa construction attorneys, please contact us today.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.