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Section 6: Division Level PS&E Review Process

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Overview

The division review process begins when the districts submit for approval preliminary submittals for such things as typical sections with Form 1002, Page 3, design summary reports, schematics, preliminary bridge layouts, etc. See Preliminary Review/Coordination in Chapter 2 of this manual for more information on these types of submittals. The purpose of these reviews is to insure that the proposed designs meet the applicable design standards and comply with all current state and federal requirements. Preliminary reviews and submittals provide a means to discover and eliminate potential design problems prior to PS&E submission. The next subsections discuss these aspects of division-level review:

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Submission Due Dates

PS&E submission occurs between 2–3 months prior to the scheduled letting. These due dates are published in the PS&E Review and Processing Schedule. The purpose for the multiple sets of plans and paperwork that are sent with the PS&E package as shown on Page 1 of Form 1002, is to allow sufficient copies of the material to be distributed for review. The type of project and type of work proposed determines the responsible division that will coordinate the processing of the project. Regardless of what division and section will be responsible for the coordination, districts will mail the PS&E submission to the appropriate Field Coordination Section in the Design Division. For projects that are not primarily of roadway geometric nature, the Field Coordination Section forwards the entire package to the appropriate office for further handling.

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Design Division - Field Coordination Sections/Bridge Division - Planning Programming Section

The Design Division - Field Coordination Sections are responsible for coordinating the processing of projects that consist mainly of roadway and structural items of work. The Design Division – Field Coordination Section reviews proposed work involving the Items 100, 200, 300, 500, 1000, 2000, 3000 and 5000 series. The Bridge Division - Bridge Planning and Programming Section is responsible for reviewing proposed work involving the Items 400 and 4000 series. If the project includes work on a bridge class structure, two copies of the package are sent to the Bridge Division for review.

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Design Division – Landscape/Enhancements Section

The Design Division – Landscape/Enhancements Section coordinates the processing of projects that consist of landscape/enhancements projects only. The Design Division – Landscape/Enhancements Section reviews proposed work involving these items:

  • Irrigation system
  • Roadside planting and establishment
  • Landscape maintenance
  • Enhancements.
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Traffic Operations Division - Field Area

The Traffic Operations Division - Field Area are responsible for coordinating the processing of projects that consist mainly of signing, pavement markers, and signal and illumination work. The Traffic Operations Division reviews proposed work involving the Items 600 and 6000 series. The Traffic Operations Division – Illumination Section reviews proposed work involving illumination items and is provided their own set of the PS&E if the project includes this type of work. An extra copy of the PS&E is provided to the Traffic Operations Division - Traffic Safety Section for hazard elimination (HES) and safety projects.

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Additional Copies of the PS&E Package

Upon receipt, the responsible division review processor looks over the PS&E package to determine which sections in the various division offices needs to review the package. Once all of the responsible review sections have been identified, the review processor makes the necessary distributions.

Federal oversight projects require an additional copy of the PS&E package. The responsible division forwards this copy to the FHWA.

Projects which include pedestrian elements (sidewalks, curb ramps, pedestrian signals, pedestrian railing, crosswalks, etc.) with an estimated cost of $50,000 or more, or projects for buildings or hike and bike trail improvements (regardless of cost) must be submitted to the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) for review and approval. The responsible division office delivers a copy of the PS&E package to the TDLR.

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Division Review Goals

The division review process is similar to the district review process. The primary goal is to make sure that the proposed work is in compliance with department, state and federal guidelines, standards, and procedures. A secondary benefit is to eliminate errors, discrepancies and omissions which might result in uncertainty or confusion in the field or which become a basis for claims by contractors. To achieve these goals, the review process involves the following:

  1. Check previously approved preliminary submittals to make sure they match the proposed plans and meet the required design standards. Deviations from the design standards must be documented through the design exception or waiver process.
  2. Check specifications and provisions to make sure all that are required have been included on the Specification List. Check to make sure obsolete specifications or provisions have not been used. See the Specifications List in Chapter 3, Section 4 of this manual for additional information.
  3. Check General Notes provided to make sure all necessary information has been included. Check to make sure things that are not supposed to be modified by note are not, such as changing measurement and payment articles, schedules and testing requirements, and contract covenants covered by Items 1 through 9. See Specifications List for additional information on the General Notes.
  4. Look for discrepancies in the pay item descriptions, unit of measure and quantity between the plans and estimate, and eliminate. Check to make sure all necessary pay items have been included in the estimate.
  5. Check estimate to make sure that the quantities shown on DCIS match the plans and are accurate. Check the estimated unit prices for accuracy. See Quantities and Prices in Chapter 4 for additional information.
  6. Check the plans to make sure all proposed work has been shown. Check to make sure all necessary standard plan sheets have been included and that the plan set is complete. Check to make sure the proper engineer’s signature, seal, and date has been placed on all required sheets. See Engineer’s Seal in Chapter 2 for proper engineer sealing procedures.
  7. Check to make sure all data on the DCIS P1 and P5 screens, used to generate the Notice to Contractors and the advertisements, are accurate.
  8. Make sure all necessary advanced funding agreements with cities and counties have been executed and the estimate and DCIS accurately reflect the funding situation.
  9. Check authorized funding and arrange for additional funding as necessary. See Funding Program Overruns in Chapter 4 for an overview of the funding and approval of overrun processes.
  10. For federal oversight projects, coordinate any comments received from the FHWA with the district. After formal submission is made, inform the FHWA representative of all changes made and request their concurrence.
  11. For federal aid projects, prepare the Federal Project Authorization and Agreement (FPAA) (see Chapter 6, Section 2).
  12. For federal aid - state oversight projects, prepare the State Letter of Authority (LOA) in Chapter 6.
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Section Reviews

Each reviewing section conducts an independent review pertaining to their area of responsibility and coordinates their comments directly with the district contact person listed on the ( Form 1002, Page 2). Once the comments are addressed, each section provides the responsible division reviewer with a copy of all agreed-upon changes that need to be incorporated into the PS&E. As previously discussed, projects involving mainly roadway, bridge and landscaping items are handled by the Design Division. Projects involving mainly striping, pavement markers, signals and illumination items are handled by the Traffic Operations Division. The responsible division reviewer provides for all of the necessary mainframe corrections to estimate, Specification List, and General Notes.

Each reviewer generally takes care of his/her own approved plan changes or makes arrangements with the district to make the necessary changes. Once all changes have been made, the E&Q sheets and General Notes sheets are plotted and inserted into the plan set. The goal is to have all comments addressed and corrections made prior to the submission deadline to the Design Division – Field Coordination Section as shown on the published PS&E Review and Processing Schedule.

Once the PS&E is corrected, the responsible division reviewing section will take the following items to the Design Division – Field Coordination Section for further processing:

  • CheckboxComplete original plan set (including plots of General Notes and E&Q sheets)
  • Checkbox3 Copies of final corrected Combined Plans Estimate (4 copies for Federal Oversight Projects)
  • CheckboxCopy of final corrected Specification List
  • Checkbox5 copies of transmittal memorandum to the district
  • CheckboxProposal Submittal Sheet (see explanation in Chapter 5, Section 4)
  • CheckboxPre-Letting Checklist (see explanation in Chapter 5, Section 4)
  • CheckboxIf applicable, copies of hard copy attachments to Special Specifications
  • CheckboxFor Federal Oversight Projects, original certifications for ROW, relocation assistance, utility adjustments and ROW encroachments along with, if applicable, unacquired ROW parcel and outstanding utility status forms for submission to the FHWA
  • CheckboxTwo original engineer-sealed supplemental sheets will be retained for future transmission to the CST.
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Bidding Document Process

Upon receipt, the Design Division – Field Coordination Sections initiate the preparation of the bidding proposal. They also send the original plan set to the General Services Division for reproduction. Copies of the half-scale plans and proposal are mailed to the division and district offices from the General Services Division. Prospective bidders obtain copies of the plans from commercial printers and proposals from the Construction Division.

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