Shearman & Sterling represented the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) in connection with the extension of a $416 million secured loan for the Central 70 Project in Colorado. The loan, issued under the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) program, will fund improvements to an approximately 10-mile stretch of I-70 East in greater Denver, adding one new tolled express lane in each direction, removing an existing viaduct, lowering a portion of the highway, and placing a four-acre park over that portion of the highway which will reconnect three Denver neighborhoods that were separated when the highway was originally constructed. Construction is expected to begin in 2018 and be completed by 2022.
The borrower, which is owned by affiliates of Meridiam Infrastructure and Kiewit Corporation, entered into a project agreement in November 2017 with the Colorado Bridge Enterprise and High Performance Transportation Enterprise (as co-authorities) to design, build, finance, operate and maintain the project under an approximately 35-year public-private partnership (P3). The debt financing also included approximately $115 million in private activity bonds (PABs).