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For immediate release: February 20, 2013
Contact: Dan Weiller (518) 471-5300

Peter Sanderson has extensive experience on infrastructure megaprojects; will be responsible for keeping project on schedule and within budget

To help ensure that the New NY Bridge to replace the Tappan Zee remains on schedule and within budget, the New York State Thruway Authority has named Peter Sanderson project director for the multi-billion dollar project, Thruway Chairman Howard P. Milstein announced today.

Sanderson will be responsible for leading a blended team of state employees and private sector design and construction experts to complete the new structure. He has more than 40 years of experience working on cable-stayed and other large and complex bridges throughout North America and around the world, including design-build infrastructure projects.

“The project director will be responsible for keeping the New NY Bridge on schedule and within budget, and Peter Sanderson is an outstanding choice for this role because he has extensive experience and a proven track record,” Milstein said. “Hiring an experienced project director is necessary and expected for a project of this size and complexity, and is generally viewed as an industry best practice.”

Sanderson was project manager for the design-build contract to replace the I-35W Mississippi River Bridge in Minneapolis, which collapsed in 2007. The new bridge was opened to traffic just 11 months after the tragedy and three months ahead of an already accelerated 14-month schedule. He was also principal-in-charge for the Sagadahoc Bridge connecting Bath and Woolwich, Maine, the Maine Department of Transportation’s first design-build project, as well as the Clark Bridge, a cable-stayed bridge in St. Louis, Missouri, that was completed ahead of schedule.

“Peter Sanderson was a tremendous project manager for the new I-35W bridge at a very critical time in Minnesota’s history,” said Tom Sorel, who was Minnesota Department of Transportation Commissioner when the bridge was being constructed and is currently president and CEO of the American Automobile Association in Minneapolis. “Not only did he lead the delivery of the project in an exceptional manner, he realized that the building of the new bridge represented a healing process for an entire community and did all he could to rebuild public trust and confidence in the transportation industry.”

“Given the scale of the New NY Bridge project, hiring a project director is a proven method to control costs and keep a project on schedule, and has been used effectively on many major transportation infrastructure projects around the country in recent years,” said American Road and Transportation Builders Association President and CEO Dr. Peter Ruane. “The project director will play a vitally important role not only with the design-build team, but also with the community and other stakeholders. This project has worldwide importance and I commend New York State for recognizing the need for experienced, professional management.”

“Peter Sanderson brings an incredible breadth of knowledge, experience, and leadership to this Tappan Zee Bridge project,” said Business Council of Westchester President & CEO Dr. Marsha Gordon. “This is another example of how the new New York attracts the best talent to lead our state forward. The Business Council of Westchester looks forward to welcoming Peter Sanderson and creating many bridges for him to our members and the community.”

“The appointment of Peter Sanderson as Project Manager for the Tappan Zee Bridge and the wealth of industry experience he brings to this crucial project is another significant step forward toward the long overdue replacement of one of New York’s most critical pieces of transportation infrastructure,” said Mike Elmendorf, president & CEO of the Associated General Contractors of New York State. “We applaud Governor Cuomo, the Thruway Authority and New York State Department of Transportation for their dogged commitment to moving this project forward with unprecedented speed, as well as the bright light this process has shined on our significant infrastructure needs throughout New York.”

“The Hudson Valley region’s construction industry is thrilled with Thruway Authority’s appointment of Peter Sanderson as New NY Bridge Project Director, continuing the campaign to assemble world-class bridge builders who will deliver a Hudson River crossing to serve New York State taxpayers, road and mass transit users over the next century and beyond,” said Construction Industry Council of Westchester and Hudson Valley President Ross J. Pepe.

“With the addition of Peter Sanderson to the New NY Bridge project, Governor Cuomo and the Thruway Authority have taken another major step forward,” said Secretary of the New York Roadway and Infrastructure Coalition Stephen Morgan. “The New York Roadway and Infrastructure Coalition commends the administration for reaching out and getting the best team to build this most exciting and needed project.” 

“Peter Sanderson’s vast engineering and construction experience, combined with his decades of experience leading complex infrastructure projects, make him the perfect choice to head the new NY Bridge initiative,” said New York Building Congress President Richard T. Anderson. “We at the Building Congress applaud the Cuomo administration for selecting an industry veteran with a sterling reputation for completing major projects on time and on budget. No single infrastructure project is more important to the long-term economic vitality of the entire downstate region than the construction of a safe, modern and larger capacity crossing to replace the obsolete Tappan Zee Bridge.”

The official project budget and schedule will be available on line at starting in May. This will give the public the ability to track progress on the project and monitor the delivery team’s performance. Project costs will be updated and compared with the budget on a quarterly basis.

The New NY Bridge project is the largest transportation design-build project to date in the United States and the largest single construction contract in New York State history. Under the design-build process, engineering and construction firms join forces to compete for a single contract that covers both design and construction, and bids are selected based on best value offered. Design-build contracts foster private-sector creativity and innovation, shift risk, limit project delays and keep costs down.


Andrew M. Cuomo

New York State
Thruway Authority

Federal Highway

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