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Martin Nicholson, deputy executive director for the Metro Flood Diversion Authority, and Sharon (pronunciation: shah-ROHN) Novak with S&B USA and the Red River Valley Alliance's executive committee, show the IJ Global award recognizing the FM Area Diversion project as the Water Deal of the Year - North America on March 17 Download Image
March 20, 2022

UPDATE: FM Area Diversion Honored with Three International Awards


FARGO, ND (March 18, 2022) – The FM Area Diversion project received three international awards from different organizations this month. Yesterday, IJ Global recognized the project as the Water Deal of the Year – North America and the Public Sector of the Year – North America. IJ Global highlights “best-in-class transactions and organizations across the international infrastructure and energy sectors.”

Earlier this month, Proximo Infra, a London-based organization working in energy and infrastructure financing, named the FM Area Diversion its North America Water Deal of the Year. They called the project “a huge multi-sourced P3 [public-private partnership] for a flood resilience asset.”

“These achievements were absolutely a team effort. Many people put in a lot of time and effort to assemble a public-private partnership that can provide the Fargo-Moorhead area with flood protection faster and for less expense than traditional construction methods,” said Joel Paulsen, Metro Flood Diversion Authority executive director. “It’s gratifying to see this work recognized across the world.”

Also important to winning these awards was the green financing that was used for the deal, as the project contributes to combating climate change and creating sustainable cities and communities.

The MFDA is the governing authority managing the congressionally authorized FM Area Diversion project. Its P3 partner is the Red River Valley Alliance, which is constructing the Diversion Channel and related infrastructure components of the project.

“We are honored and humbled to be recognized for these awards,” said Esther Madrigal Diez, Red River Valley Alliance project manager. “We take great pride in being selected to deliver this historic project. This award represents our dedication to the community, sustainability, and innovation.”

These latest awards add to the recognition the project has been receiving already in 2022. Project Finance International named the project the Americas P3 Deal of the Year. Additionally, the U.S. Corps of Engineers and one of its contractors, Ames Construction, received the Dan W. Renfro Partnering Award from the Mississippi Valley Associated General Contractors for their work on the diversion.


The MFDA is the governing authority managing the FM Area Diversion. The project is designed to provide permanent, reliable flood protection to the Fargo-Moorhead metropolitan area. This video outlines how that will be done. Construction on the FM Area Diversion began in 2017 with expected completion of the project by 2027. For more information about the MFDA, visit


The Red River Valley Alliance (RRVA) is a consortium of developers charged with developing, designing, construction, operating and maintaining the Fargo Moorhead Area Diversion project. The lead members of the public-private partnership agreement include ACCIONA, Shikun & Binui (S&B) USA and the North American Construction Group. The RRVA is responsible for the construction of the diversion channel and the necessary associated infrastructure including bridges, railway crossings and aqueducts, plus operation and maintenance for 30 years.


ACCIONA (AHK-see-oh-nah)

Shikun (shih-KOON) & Binui (bihn-OY)