Water Design-Build Council Blog

Project Spotlight: Orlando, Florida, Wastewater Treatment Project

Posted by Admin on Thu, Aug 28, 2014 @ 11:45 AM

wastewater-treatmentWith the goal of diverting freight traffic from Orlando, Florida, CSX offered to purchase the city of Winter Haven’s 1,200-acre spray field for the development of an intermodal station. The city wanted to sell the property in order to gain the financial benefit of the sale price, in addition to creating economic develop opportunities and additional tax revenue for the community.

To eliminate the need for a spray field and discharge directly into the adjacent surface water, the level of treatment from pre-existing facilities had to be updated in order to meet the strict effluent nutrient limits.

Project Highlights

Winter Haven city officials chose to use construction management at-risk (CMAR) for the 7.5mgd, $16 million facility for two main reasons. First, as part of the purchase agreement, the property had to be available to CSX for construction of the intermodal station in a very short period of time. Second, to make the transaction a profitable one, the city developed an inflexible construction cost limit that could not be exceeded for any reason.

CMAR enabled the city of Winter Haven to accelerate the project schedule by setting the guaranteed maximum price prior to completing the design phase, thus expediting the regulatory approval and permit acquisition processes, in addition to releasing long-lead-time equipment early in the project.

The city’s very capable and experienced personnel had never delivered a project before using a collaborative delivery method. Their internal project management processes were instead designed for traditional design-bid-build delivery.


Winter Haven chose Haskell as its CMAR firm. Haskell openly communicated and informed the client on CMAR delivery, which created trust and ensured a successful outcome. The firm prepared milestone estimates and conducted value-engineering studies to ensure the project construction costs were kept below the value that had been used to determine the viability of the project. The value-engineering studies led to approximately $1.9 million in savings across the lifespan of the project.

Compared to design-bid-build delivery, using CMAR shortened the overall project schedule by six months, adhering to the strict timelines outlined in the purchase agreement. In addition, Haskell returned $300,000 to the city of Winter Haven at project completion. 

Topics: Haskell