The performance-based incentives and accountability requirements built into public-private partnerships (P3s) result in high-quality projects being delivered more efficiently, cost-effectively and timely than traditional procurements, according to a report issued by a research team from Western University in London, Ontario. The report also revealed that the private partner’s commitment to operate and maintain many of these projects over time provides more value for money than strictly government-managed projects. 

The Procurement of Public Infrastructure: Comparing P3 and Traditional Approaches” found that several project-compromising practices systematically emerged in traditionally procured projects—not only in Canada, but also internationally. Examples include a tendency to prematurely assign costs to projects and establish delivery timelines, a lack of centralized coordination when managing separate contracts with multiple firms, and delays in obtaining regulatory approvals. 

In U.S. P3 news, the Bipartisan Policy Center published a model law that state legislators can use to craft bills authorizing the use of P3s on infrastructure projects. The template—which incorporates best practices nationwide, including many provisions from Virginia—also can be used to improve, expand or update existing P3 laws. For more information, visit bipartisanpolicy.org