Ralph Klein has gone and it is time to retire Ralph's World. Thanks to all of you who have supported this venture by contributing material and through your comments. It has been fun.

Should we get another blog underway? Let me know your thoughts by e-mailing me at johnnyslow@gmail.com.

John Slow
January 1, 2007

Monday, September 29, 2003

Mr. Ed Needs to Show Us the Magic 

CBC Story - 'Private' highway gets OK': "Stelmach estimated the project would cost about $300 million under the current system. He estimated savings of about 10 per cent, or $30 million, if the road is privately built and leased back to the province."

Transportation Minister Ed Stelmach has estimated that he can save the Alberta Taxpayer $30 million dollars by having an 11 kilometer section of the Anthony Henday ring-road built under a Private Public Partnership (P3). The savings will be realized by building the road as one project rather than piecemeal as money becomes available. Further savings will come from "new innovations and construction, mobilization, the ability to manage the project" says the Minister.

The implication here is that only under P3 will the construction contractors use new innovations and construction, mobilize properly, or manage the project." I can hear the conversation now as Minister Ed chats with Contractor Chuck.

Ed: Look. You have to give me some reasons why this thing is going to be cheaper under a P3.

Chuck: Well Ed it's like this. If we do it the old way we won't be able to use any of our new innovations like bulldozers and steam shovels. It would be pretty much a pick and shovel job. What's more, "mobilization" would be pretty much out of the question. As for project management, forget it. We only do that for P3 projects.

Ed: What do you mean by "mobilization"?

Chuck: It's a kind of complicated construction word Ed, don't worry about it.

Ed: OK. Can I drive the golf cart on the next hole?

Keep your eyes on the money folks. Make sure that Mr. Ed provides a clear explanation of how we are going to magically save $30 million on this project.

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