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Exclusive | £1.5bn Crewe station contract delayed

Crewe station

The launch of a £1.5bn contract to upgrade Crewe station is being delayed, New Civil Engineer can reveal.

Network Rail was scheduled to start procurement in March, but New Civil Engineer has learnt that the contract notice is now being delayed until “at least June”.

The upgrade at Crewe station is needed to accomodate the expected increase in passenger and freight growth following construction of High Speed 2 (HS2). 

A Network Rail spokesperson confirmed that governance arrangements for the procurement process were progressing but “matters” had still to be agreed before the contract is put out to tender.

The scope for the work is not yet final, but it is expected to predominantly include survey, site investigation, development, design and construction services. In addition, it will also include the commissioning of railway control systems, train power systems, electrical power and plant, permanent way, operational telecommunication systems, building and property and civil engineering works.

Draft plans for the upgrade include building a transfer deck over the station to increase its development potential. They also include and modifications to the track layout to allow the high speed trains to use two existing lines which pass though the station.

The newly upgraded station will be the first calling point on western leg of the phase 2 northern section of HS2, after the route splits near Birmingham. Main civils work on this part of the route is due to start in mid 2021.

Planning permission for the phase 2a stage of the route is currently going through the hybrid bill process in the House of Commons, after which it will be passed through the House of Lords.

A House of Lords report out this week cast doubts over the future of the current HS2 plans, calling for a “major rethink” of the scheme. 

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