Project promoter HS2 Ltd has begun contractor consultation for the main works civils contracts for the phase 2a section of the section of High Speed 2 (HS2) connecting Birmingham to Crewe.
The project promotor said the aim was to raise market awareness of the opportunities.
The 58km long section of the route will extend the phase 1 route and form the western leg of phase 2, running from the West Midlands to Crewe.
HS2 Ltd said the route was largely rural, passing through farmland, but also included residential areas and towns including Stafford and Stoke-on-Trent.
The scheme will include a 2.1km long bored tunnel, 8km of viaducts, it will involve creating 19,000,000m3 of embankments, 20,000,000m3 of cuttings, the construction of 61 bridges and one combined infrastructure maintenance depot.
Documents which will be supplied to potential bidders will include supplementary information about specific elements of the emerging procurement and delivery strategy.
Parties wishing to register their interest are being encouraged to register.
Consultation comes after transport bosses called on the rail industry to make the business case for the northern half of High Speed 2 (HS2), last week. HS2 Ltd and Crossrail chairman Sir Terry Morgan, transport secretary Chris Grayling and Transport for the North chief executive Barry White all urged rail bosses to “make the case” for HS2 phase 2, connecting Birmingham with Manchester and Leeds. All three added that phase 2 “wasn’t in the bag”, after a growing number of politicians called for the project to be scrapped.
Earlier this month, Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg told New Civil Engineer that the route should be scrapped to fund local projects such as a bypass in Bath. Ex-foreign secretary Boris Johnson and leader of the House of Commons Andrea Leadsom have also called for the project to be axed in recent weeks.
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