Network Rail has announced the final preferred bidder for track upgrade works, includes track, points, and associated overhead lines and signalling, worth approximately £1.5bn for the next decade in Central England.
The latest contract covers work in London North West, London North East and East Midlands routes and has been awarded to Balfour Beatty, TSO and SNC-Lavalin’s Atkins business.
Network Rail programme director track Steve Featherstone said: “I look forward to working closely with Balfour Beatty, TSO and Atkins to establish our new alliance to deliver great value for the taxpayer and great service for our passengers and freight customers.
“Reaching this important milestone ensures we will have a stable foundation for the delivery of the core railway infrastructure across Great Britain for the next decade.”
Earlier in 2019, Babcock Rail, Arup and Arcadis have been confirmed as the preferred bidders for Scotland and Colas Rail and AECOM for the South.
Balfour Beatty Group CEO Leo Quinn said: “As one of the UK’s leading rail infrastructure suppliers, Balfour Beatty is proud to be part of the alliance appointed to ensure reliability of the UK’s rail network.
“Our expertise will be focused on driving innovative solutions that deliver sustainable, safer rail infrastructure.
“We believe that industry collaboration is the way to drive higher efficiency and service standards. Network Rail’s new alliance model is a great step forward in rail contract procurement.”
Even though the announcement is subject to contract terms being finalised and agreed, it marks the final 10-year contract, initial five-year period with an option to extend, of three geographically-focused alliances between Network Rail, designers and construction suppliers.
TSO CEO and NGE deputy general manager Jean Bernadet said: “I am absolutely delighted TSO expertise is being recognised through this award.
“This project is a very important milestone for TSO and a great opportunity to demonstrate our expertise on track renewals and strong ability to innovate, providing a fresh look from several countries where TSO is operating.
“TSO is fully committed to delivering major improvements to Britain’s railways, together with Atkins, Balfour Beatty and Network Rail.”
Atkins CEO of UK and Europe Philip Hoare said: “This is a significant and exciting appointment for Atkins as part of an alliance helping to deliver the biggest upgrade to Britain’s railways in 150 years.
“As an industry we’re embracing new collaborative ways of working and the application of technology to meet the needs of passenger and freight services alike.”
Image: Network Rail workers at the site. Photo: Courtesy of Network Rail.