Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

Special Provisions


A clarification is a written response to a written question from a plan holder submitted by email. Clarifications tell the plan holders where to find information in the advertised proposal package. Clarifications do not explain why or provide interpretation.

The difference between addendums and clarifications is that addendums amend the advertised proposal package and become part of the construction contract whereas clarifications do not amend the advertised proposal package or become part of the construction contract.  

If the response to the question is not in the advertised proposal package and it needs to be provided to the plan holders, issue an addendum.

Benefits of a Clarification

The benefits of using clarifications include providing a standardized process for answering plan holder questions, providing consistent information to all plan holders, and providing one source of information for plan holders.

When the Clarification process is used

Clarifications are used when the process is identified using the SP2020-2 (Clarification Process) boilerplate write up in Division S of the proposal package.

Clarifications process

  1. District inserts SP2020-2 into Division S Special Provisions.
  2. Plan holder submits written questions to the Resident Engineer via email.
  3. The Resident Engineer downloads the Clarification Response Form and copies the questions into the form.
    • Number clarifications using the format Clarification No. 1, Clarification No. 2, Clarification No. 3, etc.
    • Number questions as follows (Clarification No. – Clarification Question No.).  For example, 1-1, 1-2, 1-3 for questions responded to in Clarification No. 1.  2-1, 2-2, 2-3 for questions responded to in Clarification No. 2.
  4. The Resident Engineer reviews sample clarification language (Word) and drafts the appropriate responses to each question submitted.
  5. Send the clarification request and draft Clarification Response Form to nancy.hanzlik@state.mn.us.
  6. Project Delivery reviews and edits the responses to confirm the appropriate Proposal reference is provided and returns the clarification to the Resident Engineer for review and approval.
  7. The approved clarification is posted by Project Delivery to E-Plan Room.

Clarifications deadline

Clarifications are posted up to three days before bid opening.

Who receives the Clarification

E-Plan room plan holders receive an email from MnDOT’s advertising vendor automatically if a Clarification is posted for a project. Contractors that become E-Plan room holders after a Clarification is posted do not received an email.