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HS2: Balfour JV confirmed for Old Oak Common contract

A Balfour Beatty / Vinci / Systra joint venture has formally been awarded the £1bn Old Oak Common HS2 station contract.

The JV will be responsible for the design, construction and commissioning of the station in west London. It will deliver six underground platforms and to up to eight platforms on the adjacent Great Western Main Line.

The joint venture – made up of Balfour Beatty, Vinci Construction UK, Vinci Construction Grands Projets and Systra – was initially awarded the contract in February, but a legal challenge from losing bidder Bechtel postponed the formal signing of the contract.

The US firm had argued that the contract award was botched after it was initially scored higher on the quality section of the assessment.

Last month Bechtel withdrew its legal block on the signing of the contract but said it continued to seek damages, with a hearing date set for later this month.

HS2 chief executive Mark Thurston said of the station: “Old Oak Common is one of the most important elements of the project – a landmark station that will be at the heart of the UK’s biggest regeneration project, helping to unlock the opportunity for tens of thousands of jobs and new homes.

“Balfour Beatty, Vinci and Systra have strong track records of delivering some of the world’s most challenging and exciting infrastructure projects and I look forward to seeing what they can do at Old Oak Common.”

The JV’s project director Nigel Russell said: “This award reflects the combined strength of our joint venture and recognises our world-class capabilities in designing, managing and delivering complex infrastructure projects.”

At peak construction of the station, the project will employ a direct management team of 140 and a wider workforce of approximately 2,500.

The award is also confirmed while the entire HS2 project is under review by Doug Oakervee and his team. Among the options being considered by the team is whether services should begin at Old Oak Common rather than Euston, at least for an initial period.

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