The Earthquake Ready Burnside Bridge project will provide many business opportunities for firms and jobs for workers. Multnomah County is committed to ensuring that this major capital project provides economic opportunities for disadvantaged business firms and a diverse workforce that represents our community.

The project’s construction phase will create thousands of jobs. We want this work to be performed by employees and firms based in our community.  This will help support the development of local firms and a diverse workforce and benefit our local economy. 

Construction worker on Multnomah County project.
Construction worker on Multnomah County project.
Upcoming Milestones

The project is currently in the environmental review or planning phase.  The design phase is expected to begin in 2022. Should the project secure required funds, construction should begin in 2024 and last four to five years.  Here are some important upcoming milestones for contractors and workers:

  • Owner’s Representative Contract: In August 2020, this contract was awarded to a consultant team led by David Evans and Associates.  The Owner’s Representative team will support Multnomah County as an extension of the project owner through all phases of the project.  

  • Design Services Contract: A request for proposals for the bridge design services contract will be issued in summer 2021 and the winning firm is expected to be under contract by December 2021.

  • Construction Manager/General Contractor (CM/GC) Contract:  A request for proposals for the CM/GC contract will be issued in summer 2021 and the winning firm is expected to be under contract by December 2021.  CM/GC is a project delivery method in which the general contractor is hired during the design phase to provide input and expertise during design.  This collaboration is intended to take full advantage of the contractor’s experience and expertise early in design, which can reduce risks and cost overruns during construction.

  • Project Agreement:  Multnomah County will collaborate with local trade unions, contracting organizations, equity stakeholders and workforce development organizations on an agreement that establishes targets for employing and developing a diverse workforce and subcontracting community on the project.  The agreement will be developed starting in 2021, so that workforce development can occur before construction begins in 2024. 

Future Updates

As we develop information for contractors and workers, watch this webpage for updates.  Here are resources that may be of interest to local firms and those looking for employment opportunities:

How your firm can prepare now for work on this project

  • Obtain Oregon COBID Certification and be current

  • Ensure licenses and certifications are current

  • Ensure BOLI requirements are met (i.e.; registration as training agents)

  • Build relationships with pre-apprenticeship organizations to build a diverse workforce

  • Build relationships with other COBID-certified firms as possible subcontracting opportunities

  • Review the County’s Workforce Training & Hiring Program requirements

Multnomah County policy supports diversity in contracting and workforce development

Multnomah County has an adopted policy (60-0020) stating:

(1) It is the intent of Multnomah County to provide opportunities for all segments of the business population to participate in Multnomah County contracting opportunities. 

(2) Multnomah County has a compelling governmental interest in prohibiting discrimination in programs, activities, services, benefits and employment whether carried out by the County itself or through a Contractor with whom the County arranges to carry out its programs and activities. 

(3) It is in the best interest of Multnomah County to promote and expand a thriving, diverse, well-trained workforce in the construction trades and to have diverse and thriving small businesses in our community. 

(4) It is the policy of the County that each Construction Project (as defined in Rule 60-0060) shall benefit the growth and sustainability of a diverse local workforce and shall support the advancement of firms in the fields of construction-related professional services or contracting that have been certified by the Oregon Certification Office for Business Inclusion and Diversity (COBID-Certified Firms).

Multnomah County's values and track record

Multnomah County has a history of supporting a diverse workforce and contractor community on its capital projects. The recent Central Courthouse project contracted 34% of the total contract budget to disadvantaged firms. Thirty percent of the work hours were performed by apprentices and 28% of all work was performed by minority males and 10% was performed by women.

On the Sellwood Bridge Replacement project, 20% of the total construction contract went to disadvantaged firms, while 28% of the work was performed by minorities and 13% by women.