Mersey Gateway team issues call for final tenders
The Mersey Gateway Project has invited final tenders from the three shortlisted bidders competing to deliver the project on behalf of Halton Borough Council.
The bidders have been asked to submit their tenders by 10 April, and an announcement about the identity of the preferred bidder is due in June. This means the procurement process will be delivered to the timetable published at its outset and the project team remains on track to sign a contract and begin construction work by the end of the year.
Samsung C&T Corporation has joined the Merseylink consortium as part of the construction joint venture, partnering FCC Construcción S.A. and Kier Infrastructure and Overseas Limited.
Halton Borough Council has formally reassessed the revised Merseylink consortium and has approved the change. The Merseylink consortium equity partners remain unchanged.
The three bidders are competing for a 30-year contract to design, build, finance and operate a new toll bridge over the River Mersey between Runcorn and Widnes, together with associated work in the towns. The final bids will be assessed against a set of detailed criteria that focuses on both quality and value for money.
The project will be one of the largest infrastructure initiatives in the UK over the coming years. Earlier this year Mersey Gateway was identified as one of the UK government’s Top 40 priority projects in the National Infrastructure Plan and it has been recognised by KPMG as one of the ‘Top 100 infrastructure projects around the globe’.
Its centrepiece is a new six-lane toll bridge over the River Mersey. The existing Silver Jubilee Bridge will also be tolled as part of the project, which is expected to help create thousands of new jobs, secure inward investment to the area and deliver important regeneration benefits.
The value of the construction phase of the project, including land, is estimated at £600m. The total project costs/revenues over the next 30 years will be around £2 billion. Further detail about the detailed schedule of works will be published after the appointment of the preferred bidder.
Cllr Rob Polhill, Leader of Halton Borough Council, said: “We are now nearing the end of a very detailed and complex process to appoint a private sector partner to work with us for the next three decades on the Mersey Gateway Project. This means that the new bridge we really need here in Halton is one step closer, which is great news.”
Steve Nicholson, Project Director for the Mersey Gateway Project, said: “We are still on track to meet our overall timetable of signing a contract with the appointed bidder during 2013 and it is important that we continue to focus on both the need for quality on the project and the need to deliver value for money for the public purse. I am confident that we will get three high quality submissions that will deliver on both counts.”