'); //--> Back to Boston.com homepage Arts | Entertainment Boston Globe Online Cars.com BostonWorks Real Estate Boston.com Sports digitalMass Travel
[an error occurred while processing this directive]
The Boston Globe OnlineBoston.com Boston Globe Online / Easy Pass

Romney signs law targeting design errors on Big Dig

By Raphael Lewis, Globe Staff, 3/6/2003

   
 THE SERIES

PART ONE
Bechtel's mistakes drive up cost overruns, and company profits.

Graphics
Bechtel's fee overruns
Map of major conflicts
History of the contract
Contract modifications
Cross section of roadway
Construction cost overruns


PART TWO
State officials overlook and excuse Bechtel's mistakes for a decade.

Graphic
Cost recoveries initiated


PART THREE
Powerfull allies help protect Bechtel and its bottom line.

 FOLLOW-UPS

This series has generated strong response from the state, the public, and Globe columnists.
More Globe coverage

 GLOBE DEFENSE OF SERIES

On Feb. 20, 2003, Bechtel/Parsons Brinckerhoff issued a document disputing the findings of the "Easy Pass" series. Globe editor Martin Baron responded with a defense of the Globe's reporting.
Read Bechtel's statement
Read the Globe's statement

 PHOTO GALLERY

Building a reputation
Bechtel has never shied away from big construction projects, but worldwide achievements are accompanied by controversy.
See past Bechtel projects

 FROM THE ARCHIVES

2001
Review cites flaws at Big Dig
Cerasoli charges Big Dig coverup
$1.4b overrun known in '99
Firm rejects call to offset costs
'99 memos warned of tunnel leaks

2002
Officials disclose more defects
Lawsuit raises Big Dig questions
State to reopen deal with Bechtel
Big Dig hires quality manager
US knew of hidden expenses
Big Dig overrun just plain big
SEC probers to target Big Dig
Big Dig review to target overruns
Turnpike, firm set deal on leak cost

2003
Contracts to be reviewed

 RELATED LINKS

Central Artery/Tunnel Project
www.bigdig.com

Bechtel
www.bechtel.com

Parsons Brinckerhoff
www.pbworld.com

State Inspector General reports
On the history of the Central Artery/Tunnel project's finances:
www.state.ma.us/ig/publ/cat01ex.htm
On the Central Artery/Tunnel project's attempts to recover money for mistakes:
www.state.ma.us/ig/publ/catcrex.htm

About "Scheme Z" bridge design
libraries.mit.edu/rotch/artery/

State oversight of the Big Dig
www.state.ma.us/catocc/

Mass. Turnpike Authority
www.massturnpike.com

The Artery Business Committee
www.arterybusiness.com

 ONLINE CHAT

On February 11, 2003, Globe reporter Raphael Lewis chatted with Boston.com readers about the Bechtel series.
Transcript of chat

 CONTACT THE GLOBE

Any tips? Let us know.
Phone: 617-929-3379
E-mail: bigdigtips@globe.com

 MORE BOSTON.COM COVERAGE


Beyond the Big Dig   What happens to the ribbon of land being created by the depression of the Central Artery? A joint effort between The Boston Globe, MIT, and WCVB-TV explores.
A special report


Progress updates on the Big Dig. Info
 


Governor Mitt Romney signed legislation yesterday aimed at vastly increasing the probability that state lawyers will recover some of the hundreds of millions of dollars lost to Big Dig management and design errors.

The legislation, prompted by a Globe investigation that tied $1.1 billion in overruns to mistakes and poor decisions to the Big Dig's private-sector managers, Bechtel/Parsons Brinckerhoff, gives state officials 10 years to file ''cost recovery'' claims.

Previously, the law allowed the state three years after discovering a contractor mistake to file a negligence claim, and only six years for a breach of contract suit. Until yesterday, hundreds of Big Dig mistakes were out-of-reach to state lawyers, who are now involved in an intense effort to pinpoint errors and seek recovery.

''The governor, after reading the Globe expose, definitely felt that the Commonwealth needs to do everything possible to get back any and all funds owed to us,'' said Romney spokeswoman Karen Grant.

The legislation enjoyed unanimous backing in the Legislature, where lawmakers are grappling with a fiscal crisis that makes the prospect of recovering large sums of money all the more popular.

In addition to signing the bill, Romney has begun hiring an independent team scrutinize the more than $1.6 billion in Big Dig construction cost overruns rung up to date. Romney met with Bechtel/ Parsons Brinckerhoff executives last week to outline the plan, which the company endorsed.

This story ran on page B4 of the Boston Globe on 3/6/2003.
© Copyright 2003 Globe Newspaper Company.

 Search the Globe
 Search for:  
Today Yesterday Past month Past year   Advanced Search

© Copyright 2003 New York Times Company
| Advertise | Contact us | Privacy policy |