WASHINGTON — Virginia is using a public-private partnership to put another tunnel under the Elizabeth River between Norfolk and Portsmouth. Including improvements to existing tunnels and some surface road building, the project is budgeted at $1.9 billion.

Private-sector partners Skanska Infrastructure Development and Macquarie Group Ltd. agreed in July to a fixed-price, design-build contract of $1.45 billion using equity, bank debt, and a loan from the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act. Some of that could be replaced with private-activity bonds as a financing mechanism.

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