City issues RFQ for Forest Drive Corridor Study


The City of Forest Acres is requesting qualifications from firms interested in conducting a corridor study of Forest Drive from Glenwood Road to I-77. The deadline to respond is Friday, March 7th at 3:00 p.m.

Click here to download the RFQ, or read below:


Request for Qualifications


Nestled among old-growth pines and hardwoods, the City of Forest Acres was incorporated in 1935 in part to encourage the residential qualities that will always be cherished as imparting a small town feel in urban surroundings. It's not an exaggeration to think of Forest Acres as a wonderful oasis in an urban sea. With our schools, churches, convenient shopping and ready access to an abundance of cultural events, Forest Acres is where life is at its best. 


The City of Forest Acres invites firms to submit qualifications in the disciplines of transportation engineering, civil engineering, and urban planning and design as such services will apply to a study of the Forest Drive Corridor.  A municipality of 10,500 population, this unique city lies within the Columbia SMSA. Although incorporated in 1935 Forest Acres has preserved much of its residential character and small-town feel.  The blend of beautiful residential neighborhoods, quality schools, and exceptional retail development make it a destination within the region.  Forest Acres' per foot property values often lead the region in comparable sales.   However, growth from within and without the city limits is impacting efficient traffic flow, accessibility to the retail development and schools, and is affecting the general quality of life of those living in Forest Acres.


Qualified firms are invited to respond with creativity as to how best to master plan what is in effect, the city's "Main Street". The corridor study should focus on improving traffic flow, enhancing pedestrian and bicycle safety and accessibility, and creating aesthetics on Forest Drive that enhance the city's distinctiveness. The goal shall be for plan elements to elevate the quality of life within the city while contributing to sustainability.


The Corridor Master Plan must address (but not be limited to) the following:

  • recommendations on how to improve Forest Drive traffic flow while enhancing pedestrian safety and access (road widening is not deemed to be a practical option).  For the purposes of this study the corridor is Forest Drive between Glenwood Rd and I-77 and all major intersecting streets.
  • creation of safe and accessible pedestrian, bicycle, and vehicular connectivity between residential, retail, educational, and recreational assets
  • sustain value to property and business investments
  • create aesthetics of the corridor while enhancing the city's "brand"
  • create a framework for design and planning decisions and policies that will enhance the physical environment of Forest Acres while contributing to its unique sense of place and community.  This analysis should serve as the basis for updating the Transportation Element of the city's 2009 Comprehensive Plan.
  • in order to make the best decisions for individual projects, the city needs a master plan that will provide the broad, macro vision for the future of our city. This master plan will ensure that all individual projects support and improve all other projects while building on the beauty and the character that exists in Forest Acres.
  • Work product from the study should include a digital 3-D virtual reality presentation of improvements as they would appear.


Requirements for Statement of Qualifications

The Statement of Qualifications (SOQ) shall be provided in the following format. The submittal should be no more than 12 double-sided pages excluding résumés. Please provide seven printed copies of the SOQ and one reproducible digital file.

  • A transmittal letter and general description of the firm’s capabilities and capacity.
  • A listing of relevant experience for projects previously completed, or projects currently underway. Key personnel, partnerships with other firms, performance dates, references and project cost must be included for each project if applicable.  A project approach must be provided and include all key services. The project approach should identify management structure, methods, key personnel involved with each stage, deliverables and sequence schedule. The project approach must demonstrate the firm’s capabilities and expertise in the specialized technical areas, working with the public, ability to meet schedules, team building/partnering and public relations.
  • Résumés of the firm’s key individuals proposed for this project and organization chart indicating any proposed subcontractors and/or parties to a joint venture.
  • The firm or team shall have successfully completed at least two projects having similar scope or complexity in the past five (5) years and provide descriptions and client contacts for these projects. Respondents may provide digital copies of similar projects on DVD.



Qualifications Evaluation Procedures

Evaluation of all statements of qualifications will be accomplished in the following manner:

A selection committee will be composed of select city staff, Executive Director of the Central Midlands COG, members of the Forest Acres Appearance Commission and a member of Forest Acres City Council.  Proposals will be binding for a period of ninety (90) calendar days from the date proposals are opened. Selection committee members will review each statement of qualifications and rate them on a standardized form which, solely at the city's discretion,  assigns weighted numerical values for the following categories:

  • Pertinent experience of the firm 1) Qualification of the firm members. 2) Key personnel’s professional background and expertise.
  • Pertinent experience on similar projects 1) Capability to perform work. 2) Demonstrated experience in specialized areas of traffic engineering that includes various modes of transportation.
  • Project approach 1) Interest in undertaking the project. 2) Understanding of the project’s unique characteristics. 3) Acceptability of approach methods and deliverables. 4) Ability to properly manage aspects of the project in order to stay on schedule and at cost.
  • Team Dynamics 1) Logical team make-up if applicable. 2) Successful inner team past partnerships with other firms if applicable. 3) Successful outer team past partnerships with government agencies and the public. 4) Ability to commit resources. 5) Participation of local vendors.
  • Past performance
  • Capacity to perform the work in a particular time frame.


The review committee will recommend to City Council which firm they believe is the most qualified to perform the City's study based on the stated criteria. Statements received will be reviewed and further information will be solicited from firms demonstrating the most qualified credentials.


Contract Requirements

The City will negotiate with the firm that is determined to be most qualified to complete the project. Failure to reach a contract agreement will result in the termination of negotiations with the selected firm, and opening negotiations with the second ranked firm. Proposing firms are solely responsible for the cost of preparing their statements of qualifications and for the cost of negotiations. The City will not reimburse for any cost incurred prior to execution of a professional services contract.


The firm selected by the City must execute a formal agreement for professional services prior to commencement of any work.  


For further information regarding this project, please contact, by email only, Jake Broom, Assistant City Administrator, at Consultants wishing to submit a response to this RFQ must email Mr. Broom to add their firm’s name, phone number and email address to the city’s RFQ Respondents list.  Any addenda to this RFQ will be sent by email only to the firms on the RFQ Respondents list.  Acknowledgement of addenda is required in the submittals for this RFQ.  Failure to provide acknowledgement of addenda may result in the submittal being rejected as not responsive.


Statements of Qualification should be submitted to the City of Forest Acres, 5209 North Trenholm Road, Columbia, SC 29206, to the attention of: Jake Broom, Assistant City Administrator. The deadline for submittals is Friday, March 7, 2014 at 3:00 pm.  


Deadline for questions regarding the solicitation will be Friday, February 28, 2014 at 12 noon.  Answers will be posted on city's  website for the benefit of all interested parties.  Questions and contacts should be directed to Mark Williams, City Administrator or Jake Broom, Assistant City Administrator