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GRANITE CONSTRUCTION TO BUILD PRIVATELY FINANCED TOLLWAY IN CALIFORNIA

 WATSONVILLE, Calif., July 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Granite Construction Inc. (GCI) (NASDAQ-NMS: GCCO) announced today that its wholly owned subsidiary, Granite Construction Co., has signed a $56-million contract and received a notice to proceed with construction of a privately financed automated toll road designed to relieve congestion along State Route 91 in Orange County, California. GCI also announced that it is making an equity investment in the ownership of the toll road, which will enable the company to participate in the financial success of the project beyond the initial construction phase.
 The project itself entails the building of toll express lanes in the median of SR91, also known as the Riverside Freeway. The toll road extends from State Route 55 to the Riverside County line, a distance of approximately 10 miles. The scope of the work entails construction of two express lanes in each direction, widening four existing bridge structures and the building of a temporary bridge at the intersection of SR55 and SR91, that will speed up construction of the project by approximately seven months. Construction is scheduled to take 29 months to complete on a fast-track basis. The SR91 express lanes will utilize state-of-the-art electronic toll collection technology allowing drivers to pay tolls electronically at highway speeds.
 Granite's construction contract is with the California Private Transportation Co. (CPTC), a California-based limited partnership owned by subsidiaries of Peter Kiewit Sons' Inc., Cofiroute Corp. and Granite Construction Inc. CPTC has a franchise with the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) that was awarded under provisions of Assembly Bill 680, an innovative program designed to encourage public/private partnerships to finance needed transportation improvements. CPTC will build the project, transfer ownership to Caltrans, and then lease and operate the express lanes for a franchise period of 35 years once construction is completed in late 1995.
 GCI will invest up to $8 million, comprised of a mix of cash and contingent funding. "We believe the SR91 project is not only a good construction opportunity but a prudent investment opportunity as well," said Granite President and Chief Executive Officer David H. Watts. "We've targeted projects like State Route 91 because these public/private partnerships represent new and exciting opportunities as federal, state and local governments begin to work in tandem with private industry to meet our infrastructure needs."
 Granite Construction is one of the largest heavy civil construction companies in the United States. The company has offices in California, Texas, Nevada, Arizona and Georgia. The company's stock trades on the NASDAQ/National Market System under the symbol GCCO.
 -0- 7/22/93
 /CONTACT: Mike Lawson of Granite Construction, 408-761-4717/
 (GCCO)


CO: Granite Construction Inc.; Granite Construction Co. ST: California IN: CST SU: CON

TM-LH -- SJ001 -- 4311 07/22/93 08:30 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jul 22, 1993
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