Burns & McDonnell ‘heartbroken’ about committee’s recommendation on KCI terminal

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- "The beauty is Burns and Mac comes in and says the private sector will build this facility for the same public sector price, and we'll deliver it cheaper and we'll deliver it faster," said City Manager Troy Schulte.

That was said on May 12, but on Wednesday the "hometown team" that first proposed a privately financed single terminal faced a major set back when the city council committee recommended Edgemoor Infrastructure & Real Estate to build the project, not local engineering firm Burns & McDonnell.

The airport single terminal idea has been around for a while, but it suddenly gained steam in May when Burns & McDonnell stepped up to the plate.

Disappointment is an understatement for how folks are feeling her at Burns and McDonnell. In fact, the vice president told FOX 4's Mary Pulley Wednesday they are heartbroken.

Burns & McDonnell was the first firm according to the city to step up. So many naturally thought the Burns and mac KCI home team would for sure get the bid.

Just on Tuesday, Burns & McDonnell asked the city to start the selection process over to make the process more fair

The firm became aware that Husch and Blackwell provided legal council for Edgemoor, with a privately financed project currently in the works at the University of Kansas.

Then comes Wednesday's announcement that the city's selection committee is throwing its support behind Edgemoor.

Burns & McDonnell is very disappointed despite their concerns of a conflict of interest, the selection committee want to to move forward. And they're disappointed that the city didn't chose a local firm.

"We're heartbroken with respect to this decision, but we couldn't be more proud of our partners that they committed to our team, and we couldn't be more proud of Kansas City for all of the support that they showed us. Obviously, we're disappointed in the city's decision, but from the community perspective, we would just like to say thanks," said Burns & McDonnell Senior V.P. Ron Coker.

The full city council still has to approve Edgemoor. Burns & McDonnell's Vice President said he's confident they still made the city the best offer.

Burns & McDonnell would not address the possibility of legal action on its concerns about “fairness." It also hasn’t said if it plans to try to convince the full City Council that it’s the better pick, in spite of Wednesday's announcement. We could know the answers to those open questions in the coming days.