Department of Transportation

Capital Program Management Project Delivery Process and Phases

The Project Delivery Process is how the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) evaluates, plans, designs and constructs capital projects. This process provides consistency and is how NJDOT works to ensure a quality product is created on time and at the lowest possible cost. This standard process serves as a foundation for all of NJDOT’s service areas and guidance to project management staff. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) requires use of a formal project delivery process to obtain approval and access to Federal funding. The NJDOT’s Project Delivery Process aligns with FHWA’s regulations. It controls and simplifies the process by which Federal approval and funding is obtained. The Project Delivery Process consists of the Problem Screening Phase, Concept Development Phase, Preliminary Engineering Phase, Final Design Phase and Construction Phase. The Project Delivery Process Project Customization Guideline (pdf 389k) provides information on how to customize the method to use on individual projects, including Limited Scope projects.

NJDOT’s Project Delivery Process begins with an evaluation of potential transportation problems in the Problem Screening Phase. During evaluation, NJDOT researches the problem statement to have a clear understanding of the problem and its impact. It determines how important that problem is relative to other transportation problems. These problems are then ranked by priority and importance. A primary goal of NJDOT is to make the best use of limited resources by investing in solutions that provide the greatest benefits to the transportation system on which New Jersey residents, businesses and visitors rely. Other considerations in the selection of potential projects include the type of work required and the geographical location. Taking into consideration the priority, type and location, NJDOT makes the best decision for the state and its taxpayers.

Project planning occurs during the Concept Development Phase. During this phase, NJDOT considers the problems associated with the project and looks at alternative solutions. An alternative is selected based on environmental impacts, constructability, cost effectiveness, how effectively the alternative addresses the project need, and if the project can be constructed in a timely manner.  This selected alternative becomes the Preliminary Preferred Alternative (PPA). The Project Delivery Process ensures that the PPA addresses the original project need, has the lowest negative impact to the environment and the transportation system, and can be delivered in a timely manner and a reasonable cost.

Once NJDOT approves the PPA, it is further developed using industry standards and practices. During the Preliminary Engineering phase, NJDOT conducts an environmental analysis of the PPA and initiates project design work in support of the environmental document. Key products of the Preliminary Engineering Phase include the Project Management Plan, Preliminary Engineering Report, Design Exception Report (if necessary) and the Approved Environmental Document.

During the Final Design Phase, a set of detailed construction plans and specifications are developed for construction of the project. NJDOT’s primary goal is to ensure that a quality design is developed so that a quality product can be built. In this phase, NJDOT also will secure the necessary permits to begin construction. The Project Delivery Process helps ensure all design decisions involve the right Subject Matter Experts, the design will be constructible, the end result will address the original project need, and that there will be few changes required during the Construction Phase.

In the Construction Phase, the NJDOT focuses on minimizing impacts to the existing infrastructure and the traveling public. Utilizing various engineering disciplines, NJDOT also ensures that the contractor is building the project according to the design plans and specifications. The Project Delivery Process helps ensure that all work adheres to state and federal regulations.

The NJDOT uses the Project Delivery Process to guide work on transportation projects from the identification of a problem through final construction. The Project Delivery Process at NJDOT is constantly evaluated and improved based on lessons learned and best practices from other related industries.

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Phase Summaries

Last updated date: November 25, 2019 2:26 PM