Tory leadership battle delays HS2 Phase 2a tender

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Prequalification for the main civil works on the £5.2bn to £7.2bn West Midlands to Crewe section of the project was originally due to start in July.

Prospective bidders have now been advised that “due to ongoing leadership changes within government, the approvals we require to issue the PQQ have been delayed”.

Procurement chiefs are now hoping to secure approval to proceed with the long-awaited bidding competition before the end of September, but said they would confirm a new date when there is more certainty about the timetable.

Previously, HS2 intended to split Section 2a into two major civilians with a total value of over £1.6billion.

But final thoughts suggest the 58km section will now be divided into seven civilian lots.

In the meantime, HS2 plans to update companies on the latest business model which will be used later this month to keep the process on track.

The main civil works for phase 2a of the project will include two bored tunnels totaling 2.5 km, 17 viaducts of 6.2 km, 61 bridges, 19 million m3 of embankments, 20million m3 cuttings

This month, HS2 were also due to announce the £500m design and delivery partner for the projects.

The shortlisted bidders are: 2 Connect JV (AECOM/Costain Integrated Services); AMS JV (Atkins/Mace Consult/SYSTRA; and Jacobs UK.

Bam Nuttal, Galliford Try, Laing O’Rourke and Skanska are also awaiting the outcome of their run for a £240m two-part works contract this month.

This stage two enabling works agreement follows Kier’s £50m stage one for motorways and utilities enabling works.

The three-year agreement divides the work along the route into two separate lots, with one contractor carrying out the work on the northern sections and a separate contractor carrying out the work on the southern sections.

Advanced civil works are due to begin this fall.

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