Bidder to design new terminal at KCI says selection committee directive has them scrambling

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- There's a potential new snag in the process to pick a proposal for a new KCI terminal. One of the bidders is saying the selection committee's thrown out a last minute wrench, sending them into a scramble.

The potential designs for a new Kansas City airport terminal look pretty spiffy.

"A world-class city deserves a world-class airport," said Jermaine Reed, Kansas City council member.

But the process of choosing the best airport plan is daunting.

"We understand that you just can't go down the street to a supermarket and purchase a brand new airport. You've got to be able to go through this with a fine tooth comb and do what is right. And that's what we've been doing," said Reed.

Legal and financial teams and the airlines have weighed in on the proposals from four different companies, and it's a lot to sift through. But at least one of the bidders now says after turning in all the required materials and doing comprehensive interviews, everyone's now being asked to re-do their financials by noon Thursday.

"We think it's odd to have to resubmit our financial proposal after we've already made the bid and everyone knows what our numbers are," said Karl Reichelt with KCI Partnership (AECom).

Some council members are also concerned the last minute requests could taint the process.

"When we add steps, when we add questions, this is the sort of thing that happens. So I'm not pleased by that," said council member Quinton Lucas.

"It's just a big problem. We want to make it fair and open and we don't want any hanky panky going on with the presentation or selection process," said council member Teresa Lora.

The city insists the process is fair and it just comes down to getting the best apples-to-apples comparison between bids.

"The biggest issue is really financing and we really understand what we're buying and what it is going to cost," said city manager Troy Schulte.

A final proposal won't be picked for a while. The next hurdle is approving generic ballot language by August 24, so voters can decide in November whether a new terminal gets built.

Burns & McDonnell KCI HOMETOWN Team is another bidder in the process. It sent FOX 4 the following statement:

"This is an important and complex project that will have a major impact on our City, so we are more than happy to answer any additional questions to enable the City to select the best proposal for KCI. It is completely fair. In fact, it is standard in the AEC industry for clients to follow-up with additional questions during the procurement process. It’s their way to develop a fair comparison between competing firms."