Two years after its first attempt to award what will be the last major contract in New Orleans for post-Katrina storm surge defenses, the Army Corps of Engineers again selected joint venture PCCP Constructors.

Bid protests, related legal challenges and reprocurements—as well as changed contract prices, specifications and terms—have kept the project in limbo since April 2011.

Losing bidders to the current contract are CBY Design-Builders, a CDM-led venture, and Bechtel Infrastructure Corp. Those teams and PCCP Constructors were also involved in previous contract bids and bid protests.

Spokeswomen for the CBY and Bechtel teams tell ENR they are awaiting details of their respective debriefings by the Corps before determining responses.

Corps spokesman Ricky D. Boyett says the debriefings are set to conclude by April 25 and that losing bidders have 10 days after that to file new protests. If there are none, construction is set to start in the fall and last about 44 months, he says.

The April 17 award for what is now a $614.8-million design-build project for three permanent closures and pump stations along flood-prone canals in Lake Pontchartrain.

The PCCP team includes contractors Kiewit Louisiana Co., Traylor Bros. Inc., and M.R. Pittman Group LLC.

The Bechtel spokeswoman adds “we are disappointed with the decision. Our offer was extremely competitive and based on an innovative design. While it is unlikely we will protest, we won’t make a decision until after our debrief.”

The project, originally set for completion in 2015, would be finished in 2017 if work proceeds as scheduled.