Yesterday, the City of Chicago selected two finalists in its procurement process for the planned O’Hare Express, a mass transit system that will connect downtown Chicago to O’Hare International Airport within 20 minutes–substantially faster than either existing mass transit service on the Blue Line or vehicular alternatives. The two finalists are Elon Musk’s firm, The Boring Co., and a P3 consortium including experienced firms in the P3 market such as Meridiam Infrastructure and Mott MacDonald.
Whichever firm ultimately prevails in the competition, O’Hare Express is likely to jump-start the market for mass transit P3s in the United States. Significantly, O’Hare Express is conceived as a revenue P3, which means that the private developer and operator of the system will be repaid by the revenues (e.g., fares) that it collects from users of the system. Continue Reading