Bechtel has lodged a High Court claim against High Speed 2 promoter HS2 Ltd after losing out on the £1bn contract to build Old Oak Common station in west London.
The claim has been lodged with the Technology & Construction Court, the Sunday Times has revealed.
Winning bidders for the stations at Old Oak Common and Euston were announced by HS2 Ltd in eary February. A Balfour Beatty/Vinci/Systra JV landed the Old Oak Common construction partner role and a joint venture between Mace and Dragados won the Euston contract. Both winning teams remain in an official standstill period with official contracts yet to be signed.
New Civil Engineer exclusively revealed how at least two losing bidders were considering challenging the decision, with bid teams poring over the 200 page feedback documents from HS2 Ltd to determine whether they believed they could make a case for having been scored unfairly.
In a bid for transparency, HS2 Ltd had shared scoring and feedback with losing bidders on their bids, as well as scoring and feedback provided to the winning bidders.
HS2 Ltd and Bechtel said they could not comment on legal matters but sources close to HS2 Ltd expressed disappointment about Bechtel’s decision.
It is very unusual for major contract awards to be appealed, with many firms preferring to avoid confronting major clients for fear of jeopardising relationships and future contract opportunities.
However, HS2 Ltd has already faced challenges over previous contract awards.
In April 2017 Mace objected to HS2 Ltd’s decision to award the phase 2b development partner role to CH2M. Mace was acting on a whistleblower’s information which highlighted a conflict of interest involving former HS2 Ltd employee and now CH2M employee, Christopher Reynolds who was involved in CH2M’s bid.
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