Inside the Tollway
The Illinois Black Chamber of Commerce called upon the Illinois Tollway to participate in its annual convention to help African American firms take their business to the next level.
On Thursday, September 16, Illinois Tollway Executive Director José Alvarez served on a panel of state and City of Chicago government leaders to discuss “Doing Business with State Agencies.”
Alvarez provided an overview of the various ways that professional engineering services and construction firms, as well as goods and services providers, could pursue contract opportunities with the Tollway – including contract opportunities on major Tollway projects, the I-490 Tollway and Central Tri-State Tollway (I-294) projects.
He also talked about the Tollway’s commitment to diversity and the wealth of programs and resources available to help small, diverse and veteran-owned firms do business with the agency.
Tollway efforts that help eliminate barriers to participation include the Small Business Initiative, unbundling contracts and the Rolling Owner-Controlled Insurance Program that provides liability coverage for firms enrolled in the Small Business Initiative.
Illinois Tollway staff from Engineering and Procurement also participated in a series of one-on-one matchmaking sessions with entrepreneurs and executives from African American-owned firms.
The sessions provided firms the opportunity to present their capabilities statements and gain insights into contract opportunities for their particular firms. Tollway staff met with more than a dozen African American firms over the course of the four-day convention.