Woodrow Wilson Bridge Project Evaluation and Analysis


Project Management Plan

A project management plan was drawn to highlight the procurement requirement and the time over which the project should be completed. It set out the two main objectives for constructing the bridge to construct a two drawbridges side by side and four interchanges that are adjacent. The funds required for the project were determined as $1.581 billion with the sources identified (“Woodrow Wilson Bridge, Potomac River, Maryland, Virginia”, 2018).

Requirements Documentation

The details of each contract that was to be awarded in the construction of the bridge were documented. The details documented included a description of the requirements of the all the contracts awarded, their estimated costs, the status of the contract as at the contract signing and continuous updates and the estimated duration over which the contract was expected to be completed (“Woodrow Wilson Bridge, Potomac River, Maryland, Virginia”, 2018).

Risk Register

The project plan did not identify any plans. However, large projects like these are associated with budgeting risks. The budgets estimates may not be able to fund the project to its completion which may distract project work. With the project also managed by a two-tier team, it was prone to conflict risks between the two teams (“Woodrow Wilson-Bridge – Construction”, n.d).

Activity Resource Requirements

This analyzes all resources and quantities required in the project. The area of coverage by the bridge was determined as 7.5 miles. Each of the four approach spans was allocated funds that would enable the contractors to acquire all requirements. Due to the large amount of work, the project was split into sub-projects and assigned to different contractors (“Woodrow Wilson-Bridge – Construction”, n.d).

Project Schedule

All projects are designed to start on determined date and end after a given duration. The Woodrow Wilson-Bridge was scheduled to begin in the year 2000 upon which each phase was allocated its own time of completion. A successive phase would start after the completion of the contract. This was emphasized since a delay in one would affect the whole project plan as it was designed (“Woodrow Wilson-Bridge – Construction”, n.d).

Activity Cost Estimates

The project team was mandated to provide an estimated figure for every contract within the project. All costs were estimated according to the requirements of the bridge authority. The estimates were then accumulated to arrive at the total estimate for the whole project. The costs estimates were therefore controlled to ensure that they were not higher than expected.

Stakeholder Register

The stakeholder registers in project management documents the details of all the people, organizations and groups that have an interest in the project. The Woodrow Wilson-Bridge project authority identified the public user needs of a more efficient bridge. It also identified the government agencies that funded the project such as the state Department of Transport, Federal Highway Administration, Maryland State Highway Administration and the District of Columbia Department of Public Works (“Woodrow Wilson-Bridge – Construction”, n.d).

Enterprise Environmental Factors

These refer to either external or internal environmental issues that may affect the success of the project. The Woodrow Wilson-Bridge project was influenced by external factors such as government regulations which required the contracts awarded to be regulated by the procurement laws of the state. It was also influenced by economic factors since some contractors would quote high amounts in their bids which at some point delayed the project for six months (“Woodrow Wilson Bridge, Potomac River, Maryland, Virginia”, 2018).

Organizational Process Assets

The plans, policies, knowledge bases, processes and procedures used in carrying out a project are process assets. The project was controlled by procedures and policies that were designed by the Woodrow Wilson-Bridge project coordination committee which was led by the FHWA. One of the procedures was the procurement method used in the project which was purely competitive bidding (“Woodrow Wilson-Bridge – Construction”, n.d).

Tools and Techniques

Make-or-Buy Analysis

Outsourcing is best preferred when an organization is not able to provide the facilities required or cannot produce commodities that meet the required quality. In the case of Woodrow Wilson Bridge, the interagency committed settled for the buy decision. As it can be seen, the committee mandated with the construction of the bridge used invited several contractors who did the construction from start to completion. This was the best decision due to the complexity of the project (“Woodrow Wilson Bridge, Potomac River, Maryland, Virginia”, 2018).

Expert judgment

The construction coordination committee depended on an expert judgment from consultants and other federal agencies such as the American Automobile Association, the Transport Regulations Board. Their judgments on the project execution were incorporated in the management of the project ensure that it was a viable project. Expert judgment helps in making sound decisions that cool down concerns from project stakeholders (“Case Study – Woodrow Wilson-Bridge in Maryland and Virginia, n.d).

Market Research

The Federal Highway Administration which led the project coordination committee began to research on the viability of the project. The Transport Research Board helped in determining the suitability of the project. It is through this research that it was discovered that the old bridge did not meet the transport needs hence an expansion was necessary thus recommended the project (“Case Study – Woodrow Wilson-Bridge in Maryland and Virginia, n.d).


It was the role of the Federal Highway Administration to organize meetings before the project started and during the execution period. The project was managed by a two-tier committee which comprised of the financiers, contractors and special stakeholders. During the meetings, the challenges and updates on the construction will be discussed with the contractors reporting the progress of their work (“Case Study – Woodrow Wilson-Bridge in Maryland and Virginia, n.d).


Procurement Management Plan

A procurement management plan provides guidelines on how processes, procedures, resources and people will be put into work to execute the project. It was stipulated that once the constructor was awarded the contract, they were to apply their resources to execute the contract as agreed and within the allocated period. All costs in the project were supposed to be within the procurement regulations (Schweitzer & Stephenson, 2015).

Procurement Statement of Work

The project was split into phases and awarded to different constructors. Each contract entailed its specific work that was to be completed. Constructors were, therefore, to carry out the portions of work as it was specified in their contract agreements. The procurement statement of work was developed by the project coordinating committee, and they would evaluate each contract as the statement indicated (Schweitzer & Stephenson, 2015).

Procurement Documents Every contract entered into must have procurement documents as proof of the agreements made. Since Woodrow Wilson-Bridge project was complex, documentation was highly significant. All

agreements and payments made were recorded the Federal Highway Administration providing custody of the documents. The documentation started from advertisements of the contract until the completion agreement (Schweitzer & Stephenson, 2015).

Source Selection Criteria

The source selection criteria identified the attributes that the constructors were supposed to have before bidding for the contract. These attributes were contained in the procurement documents thus the constructors would examine their resources and facilities and establish whether they were able to meet the contract needs. Special needs such as the use of special materials like steel are also addressed here.

Make-or-buy decisions

The decision to make or buy decision for the project was determined by the complexity of the project. The Federal Highway Administration made the buy decision when they decided to use competitive bidding to award the contracts. The coordinating committee after awarding the contract had no business with knowing the decisions made by the constructors as long as they had agreed to deliver the work as expected.

Change Requests

A change request is used by the parties in a contract to call for an adjustment in the processes, resources or materials used in the executing the work. One of the notable change requests was made to change from using steel box girders to use steel plate girders. This happened during the contract thus an agreement was to be made between the contractor and the procuring entity (“Woodrow Wilson-Bridge, Potomac River, Maryland, Virginia”, 2018).

Project Documents Updates

Updates to project documents are done from time to time during the execution period. These updates ensure that the project progress is verifiable since they record what portion of work is completed. Updates in the Woodrow Wilson Project must have been given although it cannot be determined through the available information (“Woodrow Wilson-Bridge, Potomac River, Maryland, Virginia”, 2018).


Case Study – Woodrow Wilson-Bridge in Maryland and Virginia. (n.d) – Transport Research Board. Retrieved October 4, 2018, from http://onlinepubs.trb.org/onlinepubs/shrp2/SHRP2_CS_C01_WilsonBridge.pdf . (Pdf file).

Schweitzer, L., & Stephenson, M. (2015). Planning, Development, and Media. Journal of Planning Education and Research,36(2), 239-254. doi:10.1177/0739456×15620280.

Woodrow Wilson-Bridge – Construction. (n.d). Retrieved October 4, 2018, from http://capital-beltway.com/Woodrow-Wilson-Bridge-Const.html#LATEST_UPDATE .

Woodrow Wilson Bridge, Potomac River, Maryland, Virginia. (2018). Retrieved October 4, 2018, from https://www.roadtraffic-technology.com/projects/woodrow_wilson/ .