First BuildLAX class graduates

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The first class of small business construction contractors has graduated from Los Angeles World Airports’ (LAWA) BuildLAX Academy.

Launched in June 2019, BuildLAX prepares small and local business representatives to compete for bidding opportunities with prime contractors working at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). The inaugural class of the eight-week program included 17 graduates who own or work at small businesses near the airport.

“The transformation of LAX is a multibillion-dollar effort, and we want to make sure that our small and local businesses are not stopped by one of the biggest hurdles to getting a contract at LAX – navigating what can be a very complicated bidding process,” said Bob Gilbert, strategic advisor, LAWA.

“Thanks to the BuildLAX Academy, our graduates are better prepared to compete for contracts at LAWA and we look forward to welcoming many back as winning contractors in the near future.”

BuildLAX Academy content includes project planning, project labor agreements, local hire and labor compliance, surety bonds and insurance, construction management and project administration. Courses are led by representatives of LAWA and its contractors.

In addition to giving contractors the knowledge they need to submit viable and competitive bids, the program also helps small businesses gain the skills required to successfully plan a project. BuildLAX not only enables prime contractors on LAX projects to meet local hiring requirements, but also helps to retain the benefits of economic development in the area surrounding the airport.

The new graduates are now ready to pursue opportunities in LAWA’s capital improvement program, including the LAX landside access modernization program, the Midfield Satellite Concourse and the Airport Police Facility.   

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Tara has worked for UKi Media & Events since 2013, initially as a freelancer. She has been a journalist for over a decade and has worked for a range of publications, including Personnel Today, Management Today and The Grocer.

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