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Crossrail announces shortlist for running tunnels contracts

Crossrail Limited today confirmed the shortlist of bidders for two principal tunnelling contracts - Package C300 for Western Running Tunnels and Package C305 for Eastern Running Tunnels.

The shortlist is:

  • a joint venture comprising Balfour Beatty Civil Engineering Limited, Morgan Est plc, Vinci Construction Grand Projets and Beton-und Monierbau Gesellschaft;
  • a joint venture comprising BAM Nuttall Limited, Ferrovial Agroman (UK) Limited and Kier Construction Limited;
  • a joint venture comprising Costain Limited, Skanska Construction UK Limited and Bilfinger Berger Civil (Ingeneirbau GmbH);a joint venture comprising Dragados, S.A. and John Sisk & Son (Holdings) Limited; and
  • a joint venture comprising Laing O'Rourke Construction and Bouygues Travaux Publics SA

The publication of this shortlist marks commencement of the formal tender process for two of the three bored tunnel contracts that Crossrail will manage. Technical information packs will be supplied to the bidders in December with the balance of tender documents issued in early January 2010. Contracts are expected to be awarded by mid-2010.

A total of 21km of twin-bore tunnel are required to be constructed for Crossrail. The shortlisted bidders will be tendering for a total of 18km of twin-bore tunnel.

Andy Mitchell, Programme Director, Crossrail said:
"Crossrail has now started the formal tendering process for the new rail tunnels that will run underneath central London linking the Great Eastern and Great Western National Rail lines and will form the centrepiece of the Crossrail project. This is yet another significant milestone for Crossrail following the start of construction at Canary Wharf earlier this year.

"In just under two years from now the first of the tunnel boring machines will start out on its journey from Royal Oak towards Farringdon. This will be followed shortly by the launch of a further tunnel boring machine in Docklands that will head towards Farringdon under central London. Teams of dedicated construction workers will be working 24 hours a day to complete the tunnels for Europe's largest civil engineering project with thousands of others employed to upgrade the existing rail network and build major new stations along the central section of the route. Such is the scale of this undertaking that Crossrail will next year open a dedicated Tunnelling Academy which will provide Londoners with the necessary skills to work in a variety of tunnelling roles and is expected to train up to 3,000 people by 2015.

"Once complete in 2017, new 10-carriage trains carrying up to 1,800 passengers will travel through the 21km long tunnels significantly reducing journey times between Heathrow, the West End, the City and Canary Wharf and providing new journey opportunities and much needed additional transport capacity."

The two tunnelling contracts are:
Package C300 - Western Running Tunnels comprises the construction of twin 6.2m diameter bored tunnels from a portal at Royal Oak (west of Paddington Station) through to the new Crossrail Farringdon Station, length of drive approximately 6.2km including a crossover at Fisher Street.

Package C305 - Eastern Running Tunnels comprises the construction of twin 6.2m diameter bored tunnels from:

  • a portal at Limmo Peninsular through to the new Crossrail Farringdon station, length of drive approximately 8.3km;
  • a launch chamber at Stepney Green through to Pudding Mill Lane Portal, length of drive approximately 2.7km; and
  • a portal at Limmo Peninsula through to Victoria Dock Portal, length of drive approximately 0.9km

Upon award, the successful contractors will commence procurement of tunnel boring machines in accordance with Crossrail specifications and design and construct tunnel segment manufacturing facilities to ensure sufficient supply of tunnel segments are available upon commencement of tunnelling.

The contractor will also conduct constructability reviews of the detailed design with Crossrail framework design consultants and initiate other construction planning, temporary works design and permitting activities in support of site mobilisation.

Tunnelling is scheduled to commence in late 2011.


Media inquiries:

Ankeeta Munsi, Crossrail Press Office020 3229 9552, [email protected]

Notes to Editors

Crossrail Progress
The Crossrail Act received Royal Assent on 22 July 2008, granting the powers to build the railway, and Crossrail construction began on 15 May 2009 with work commencing at the new Crossrail Canary Wharf station. The main construction programme begins along the route in 2010.

Since works began at Canary Wharf Crossrail has been moving rapidly ahead and progress includes:
Demolition works at Tottenham Court Road commenced on 18 May. The demolition of the Astoria Theatre site is now completed.

New top level management team in place.Station design contracts awarded for all central area stations and portals.

Crossrail Visitor Information Centre opened at Tottenham Court Road.

Invitations to Tender for the first two tunnelling contracts have been issued.

University of York announces new Master of Engineering course in Embedded Systems to be supported by Crossrail.

European Investment Bank announced £1 billion loan to TfL for Crossrail.Crossrail confirms that some 4 million m³ of excavated materials will be transported to Wallasea Island in Essex for the creation of a new bird and wildlife wetlands reserve.Crossrail and Port of London Authority sign memorandum of understanding for removal of excavated materials by river.

Giken piling completed on schedule at Canary Wharf and work has commenced on constructing a cofferdam in the North Dock.Islington Council approves plans for Crossrail/Thameslink station at Farringdon.

Works commence for he deconstruction of Cardinal Tower at Farringdon.OJEU issued for Paddington Integrated Programme.

OJEUs issued inviting bids for tunnelling packages for Bond Street and Tottenham Court Road Tender submissions.

The Government announced that the route from Abbey Wood to Hoo Junction in Kent has been safeguarded to ensure that developments along this rail corridor do not impact on the ability to extend Crossrail in the future.

Site in London Boroughs of Newham and Redbridge acquired and OJEU issued for construction of Crossrail Tunnelling Academy.

Enabling works and compulsory purchase of properties for Tottenham Court Road Western ticket hall at Dean Street commenced.

TfL award Tottenham Court Road LU station redevelopment to Taylor Woodrow Construction and BAM Nuttall Limited.

Crossrail is promoted by Crossrail Limited (CRL). CRL is a wholly owned subsidiary of Transport for London.

About Crossrail

Crossrail is Europe's largest construction project.

Crossrail will run 118 km from Maidenhead and Heathrow in the west, through new twin-bore 21 km tunnels under central London to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east. It will bring an additional 1.5 million people within 60 minutes commuting distance of London's key business districts. When Crossrail opens in 2017 it will increase London's rail-based transport network capacity by 10 per cent, supporting regeneration across the capital, helping to secure London's position as a world leading financial centre, and cutting journey times across the city.

Crossrail will deliver substantial economic benefits for all of London and the South East after the new railway opens in 2017. A study published in February 2009 assessed the key benefits including faster journey times, reduced and public transport congestions, improved productivity and higher earnings. When the results are modelled for just one year - 2026 - the annual economic benefit across all of London's boroughs is estimated at £1.24bn at 2008 prices.

The Crossrail Tunnelling Academy will open in 2010. Up to 14,000 people are estimated to be employed at the peak of construction in 2013/2015.

Preparatory works have been underway throughout 2009 with the main construction programming starting in 2010 and tunnelling in 2011. Crossrail is scheduled to open for service in 2017.