YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

Airport Editorial Missed the Mark

August 01, 1993

* Your editorial "A Bargain at $9.6 Million" (July 6) misses the mark.

It is important that the citizenry of Orange County have correct information regarding the building of our impressive new John Wayne Airport facility.

The job was the largest public works project ever completed by our county.

Taylor Woodrow California Construction Limited takes justifiable pride in its building of the new terminal, the upper roadway and the northwest parking structure. There is no question about the quality of the construction or the professional manner in which Taylor Woodrow completed the terminal, advancing significant funds to do so.

Considering the circumstances under which the company was working, it was no small accomplishment to complete the task in the manner and in the time that it did.

For the record, Taylor Woodrow and its subcontractors were paid approximately $74.3 million by the county for the building of the terminal. We estimate the county's fees and costs connected with litigation to be several million dollars.

The actual cost to complete the entire project should be public information and should be available to those who diligently pursue it. The public has both the right and the need to know.

Until recently, Taylor Woodrow's ongoing offer to mediate the disputes over the years of litigation fell on unreceptive ears. The settlement reached was one that was attainable earlier.

The taxpayers and Taylor Woodrow carried the burden of the county's poor planning and work coordination and government's lack of accountability.

In the future, Orange County government needs to enter into a partnering relationship with private enterprise with its public works programs, with better communication and built-in mechanisms to resolve honest disagreements in a businesslike, efficient manner.

It is unfortunate that two reputable entities such as the government of the county of Orange and private enterprise's Taylor Woodrow found it necessary to engage in acrimonious debate and expensive and divisive adversarial proceedings to resolve their differences.

Both parties have done well to end their dispute over the airport construction in the manner and form that they have.



Los Angeles Times Articles