Swedish firm wins huge New York airport bid

A consortium led by Swedish construction company Skanska has been picked for a $3.6 billion (30.5 billion kronor) project to modernize New York's LaGuardia Airport, regional transport officials have announced.

Swedish firm wins huge New York airport bid
Travellers at New York's LaGuardia Airport in January 2015. Photo: TT

The contract is the largest in Skanska's history and follows the group also winning the contract to build the Metlife Stadium, where the American football teams New York Jets and New York Giants play.

The Skanska team, called LaGuardia Gateway Partners, was tapped by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to demolish the existing central LaGuardia terminal and build and maintain a replacement.

They beat out a competing bid by a team that included major rivals Aeroports de Paris, Goldman Sachs and the architecture firm Kohn Pedersen Fox.

Other members of the consortium are Walsh Construction, Vantage Airport Group, which manages nine airports around the world, Meridiam, Parsons Brinckerhoff, and HOK, the global architecture group.

Located in the borough of Queens, LaGuardia is one of three major airports serving the New York City region. Port Authority officials described the upgrade as necessary for New York to compete effectively with Tokyo and other global centers.

They said partners in the Skanska consortium have worked on more than 350 aviation and transport projects, including the John F. Kennedy Airport in New York and at international airports in Boston and Los Angeles.

Transport officials said the upgraded airport would replace a facility that currently suffers from overcrowding. Construction is scheduled to begin in the first quarter of 2016.

Several airlines fly between Sweden and New York, with budget carrier Norwegian launching a no-frills service in 2013.


Skanska dragged into builder blacklist case

Swedish construction firm Skanska has been named in the builder blacklist scandal currently making its way through the British courts, with disgruntled builders demanding compensation after being denied jobs due to union affiliations.

Skanska dragged into builder blacklist case

Seventy-nine workers in the UK have asked for compensation after it emerged that several construction companies had access to a database of blacklisted workers – effectively cutting them out of the labour market, according to the claim made in court.

The suit against Sir Robert McAlpine construction was valued at £17 million ($26.4 million) by the Guardian in January, and analysts at the time said several other companies would likely be sucked into the legal quagmire.

Swedish builders union magazine Byggnadsarbetaren reported on Wednesday that McAlpine has now submitted a list of nine other companies – including Skanska – to the High Court. McAlpine claims these companies also accessed the information collected by an organization called The Consulting Association.

One person on the blacklist was a 46-year-old engineer named Dave Smith, who had made his way onto the list for bringing his employers’ attention to safety hazards on building sites where he worked. The Guardian reported that the list also included information on trade union membership and political affiliation.

The legal document filed in January read: “The files regularly included recommendations as to whether an individual should be employed. Typical entries were in terms such as ‘Do not employ and ‘Above not recommended by Amicus’.”

When contacted by Byggnadsarbetaren earlier this year, Skanska said it would likely be pulled into the legal case. The company chose not to comment on the new phase of legal proceedings this week, instead emailing the magazine to say it took the case seriously, distanced itself from blacklisting, and would cooperate in full with British authorities.

TT/The Local/at

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