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HS2 contractors urged to share resources

Hs2 2by3

Design teams and offsite manufacturing plants could be shared by several contractors for work on High Speed 2, a project boss has predicted.

Chris Dulake, engineering director at project promoter HS2 Ltd, said he would like to see the successful bidders for major civils packages on the rapid rail link work together to build efficiently.

Dulake was speaking at the NCE Tunnelling Summit in London last week.

“If industry has its arms around sections of the railway and is collaborating then we may see single manufacturing facilities used across several contracts – that would be a positive thing to see,” he said.

Dulake talked up the chances of seeing offsite construction on the project.

“Even forgetting the efficiency savings and quality of product [you get with offsite manufacturing], there is a safety benefit from minimising the number of hours you ask people to work in the wind and rain.”

The former Crossrail chief talked about the opportunities for simplifying design as well as construction of HS2.

“There is a great opportunity to use the same designer on two adjacent contracts. Don’t reinvent the wheel – would it not be sensible to use the same designer for adjacent designs?

“There is a tendency in the UK to overdesign. We want efficient designs that contractors can build easily.”  

Dulake told NCE last month that experience of working on Crossrail would be a “big advantage” to the teams competing for High Speed 2 civils packages.

The deadline passed in November for expressions of interest in seven contracts that could be worth almost £12bn to work on the rapid rail link from London to the North.

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