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Senior Director of Projects

Virginia Passenger Rail Authority
Richmond, VA
  • Full-Time
Job Description

The Virginia Passenger Rail Authority (VPRA) is a political subdivision established by Chapter 1230 of the 2020 Acts of Assembly. VPRA is responsible for promoting, sustaining, and expanding the availability of passenger and commuter rail services in the Commonwealth, including all administrative and fiduciary responsibilities for Virginia's state-supported passenger rail services. The VPRA also funds Virginia Railway Express (VRE) and administers all capital expansion projects, infrastructure, and land acquisitions related to the $3.7 billion Transforming Rail in Virginia initiative, which will double Amtrak and VRE service in Virginia over the next decade. The VPRA acts as a "responsible public entity" for acquiring, constructing, improving, maintaining, or operating a "qualifying transportation facility" under the PublicĀ­ Private Partnership Act of 1995.

The Senior Director of Projects is responsible for directing and managing all engineering and construction activities for the multi-billion dollar Transforming Rail in Virginia program, which includes rail projects along the I-95 Corridor between Washington, DC, and Richmond, VA. The position will collaborate with the Assistant Vice President of Engineering and Construction to lead project managers assigned to various projects throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. The projects include the Long Bridge Project, Franconia-Springfield Bypass, and various 3rd and 4th track mainline and siding projects. In addition, this position may function as a project manager to support smaller projects. The Senior Director of Projects will work with VPRA staff, leadership, partner agencies, key corridor stakeholders such as NPS, DDOT, FRA, CSXT, Amtrak, and VRE, government officials, and external consultants to determine the scope, schedule, and budget for assigned projects. This position may work in the Richmond, Virginia, or Alexandria, Virginia, office.

In partnership with the AVP, Engineering & Construction, the Senior Director of Projects will:

  • Hire, manage, and direct VPRA staff resources and consultants to meet program and project goals, objectives, and milestones.
  • Manage and be responsible for all program-wide and project-specific budgets and schedules during engineering.
  • Conduct rigorous oversight and effective management of engineering and construction activities.
  • Administer Federal and state grant funds following the USDOT's Fast Lane grant program, other applicable Federal requirements, and Commonwealth of Virginia requirements.
  • Direct the rail program of projects through the engineering and design phases in coordination with relevant federal, state, and local agencies, stakeholder groups, and private entities.
  • Communicate with and advise outside entities and agencies, including CSX Transportation (CSXT), the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT), Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs), Virginia Railway Express (VRE), Amtrak, the District of Columbia, the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT), Virginia localities, citizen groups, and others.
  • Be responsible for close coordination with VRE to proactively identify and mitigate scope and scheduling conflicts related to VRE and VPRA projects being advanced in the same geographical areas.
  • Ensure all projects advance on schedule and budget and that projects are successfully transitioned for construction.
  • Represent the agency with diverse constituencies, including government officials, agency partners, project partners, other stakeholders, and the public.
  • Work with others on stakeholder engagement and in providing reports/updates to elected officials, the VPRA Board, senior members of the USDOT, and the Virginia Secretary of Transportation.
  • Travel between ongoing projects throughout the State regularly (25% or more). Occasional overnight travel may be required.

Required Education:

  • Bachelor's degree in engineering, construction management, or a closely related field
  • Current Professional Engineer (PE) license in Virginia

Preferred Education:

  • Master's degree in engineering, engineering management, construction management, or business administration
  • Project Management Professional (PMP) Certification

Required Experience:

  • Extensive experience directing major transportation infrastructure projects, freight or passenger rail project development, and construction.
  • Ten (10) years of combined experience in transportation project development and construction management or the equivalent in training, education, and leading projects and programs of increasing complexity.
  • Highly skilled and experienced in communicating with elected officials, MPOs, senior government officials, business representatives, and the public.
  • Considerable experience managing engineering activities for a program of large, complex transportation projects.
  • Specialized knowledge of passenger or freight rail projects.
  • Demonstrated project management proficiency, including contracts/contractor management, project scheduling, budgeting, cost/schedule controls, risk and contingency management, and scope change management.
  • Ability to build, understand and manage project budgets and schedules using industry standard procedures and formats.
  • Knowledge of administrative and business processes, programmatic and operational controls, personnel management, and budgetary controls.
  • Knowledge of program evaluation methodology, analysis, and strategic decision-making.
  • Ability to successfully manage and coordinate multiple consultants providing engineering services, project management, and program management support.
  • Understanding freight, passenger, and commuter rail operations, including familiarity with operations modeling and railroad safety.
  • Expert knowledge of railroad engineering principles.
  • Experience leading constructability reviews and value engineering for complex transportation projects.
  • Ability to build consensus among multiple stakeholders with competing interests and drive effective and strategic decision-making to advance a program of projects and initiatives on schedule.
  • Knowledge of federal, state, and local transportation policies, funding, legislative processes, and regulatory requirements related to freight and rail projects, including 49 CFR, Subtitle B, Ch. II and AREMA guidelines.
  • Familiarity with environmental processes for transportation projects, including the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).
  • Demonstrated ability to work as a team member, leader, manager, and problem solver in an organization with a diverse staff and customer base.
  • Ability to communicate effectively, orally and in writing, with various individuals, including elected officials, the Commonwealth Transportation Board, senior transportation officials, the General Assembly, and the media.
  • Proficiency using MS Word, MS Project, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Internet Explorer.

Preferred Experience:

  • Familiarity with MS SharePoint, scheduling, and enterprise resource planning (ERP) software.
  • Direct experience leading the design and construction of passenger and commuter rail systems, including Amtrak.
  • Relevant leadership experience with the design, construction, or operations experience with Class 1 railroads, specifically CSX Transportation and Norfolk Southern Corporation.

Are you interested in this position, but you don't meet every single requirement? At VPRA, we are dedicated to building a talented team and an inclusive, authentic workplace. So, if you're excited about this role but your experience doesn't align perfectly with every qualification in the job description, we encourage you to apply anyway. You may be the right candidate for this or other positions.

Applicants must fully and accurately represent their qualifications and work history on the application or resume. The decision to interview an applicant is based on the information in the application, resume, or other relevant documents; therefore, applicants must supply detailed information. Submitting an incomplete application/resume or an application/resume lacking in detail may impact your interview eligibility. This website will confirm receipt when the application is submitted successfully. Reasonable accommodations are available to individuals with disabilities during the application and interview processes per the Americans with Disabilities Act. VETERANS, PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES, AMERICORPS, PEACE CORPS, AND OTHER NATIONAL SERVICE ALUMNI ARE ENCOURAGED TO APPLY. Equal Opportunity Employer


Virginia Passenger Rail Authority

Richmond, VA
23219 USA



Posted date

Over a month ago
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