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Major NYC construction projects can now be streamlined

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Plus, Andy Byford is into this whole Train Daddy thing—and more intel in today’s New York Minute news roundup

The reconstruction of the crumbling BQE is one such project the city aims to use design build.
Max Touhey

Good morning, and welcome to New York Minute, a new roundup of the New York City news you need to know about today. Send stories you think should be included to tips@curbed.com.

Cuomo signs “design-build” bill

Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed a bill this week that will allow New York officials to fast-track the contracting process on public projects. The governor authorized a handful of city agencies to use the “design-build” method, which combines project design and construction contracts to cut through red tape and save dollars.

Good government group the Citizens Budget Commission projects the change could save the city up to $2 billion in 10 years by using design-build for bridge work alone.

“Design Build means less red tape and more new-and-improved libraries, roads, and bridges,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said of the bill’s passage.

The new law applies to any project with a $10 million price tag, and requires a project labor agreement to set wage and other standards. The city says it has already identified 49 projects that could benefit from the method and save the city up to $300 million.

The state used the design-build model to build projects such as the $4 billion Mario M. Cuomo Bridge. New York City is currently using the method for a handful of major projects, including the $8.7 billion borough-based jail plan to replace Rikers Island.

And in other news…