HS2 Ltd has begun the search for a team of specialist for HS2 Phase 2b ground investigation for which a single framework contract worth around GBP 300 million (EUR 350.7 million) will be signed. The bidders will be shortlisted towards the end of the year with the contract award expected in 2022.
The contract includes the appointment of a lead ‘Ground Investigation Partner’ supported by up to ten specialist ground investigation contractors to deliver the sophisticated programme of work.
The framework will be signed for a period of 8 years, with the option to extend for a further two years. The contract is split into two lots.
Under the first lot of up to GBP 85 million (EUR 99.36 million), the Ground Investigation Partner will be responsible for managing and co-ordinating the packaging of GI works as well as the planning and the implementation of GI site enabling works.
The GI Contractors, worth up to GBP 215 million (EUR 251.3 million), will be responsible for the acquisition and formal reporting of geotechnical, hydrogeological and geo-environmental data through surveys, the excavation and detailed logging of exploratory holes, and high-quality in-situ and laboratory testing.
“This framework agreement is an important step in our plans to bring HS2 to the North. It will enable us to procure a comprehensive body of ground investigation data to inform our future civil engineering works,” HS2’s Procurement and Supply Chain Director, Andrew Cubitt, said.
The company says that this flexible approach will allow to call on as much technical expertise as required, depending on design needs and the outcome of the government’s Integrated Rail Plan, which is expected to be published later this year. It will also allow for contractors to be pulled in to deliver ground investigation work to support the delivery of the government’s Integrated Rail Plan.
In total, the ground investigation programme allows for more than 15,000 exploratory holes and will enable a model of the ground beneath the whole route to be developed. This geotechnical data has a vital role to play in informing the design and construction of the railway and allows ground hazards to be addressed and managed effectively.
As part of the government’s plans to build back better and deliver economic benefits and improved transport links to the North quicker, the Government has instructed HS2 Ltd to proceed with legislation for the Western leg of HS2 Phase 2b, from Crewe to Manchester as a priority.