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HS2 commercial director to leave

HS2 High Speed Rail

New Civil Engineer understands High Speed 2 Ltd (HS2) commercial director Beth West is to leave the organisation to join commercial developer Land Securities.

Her departure is understood to be unconnected to the phase 2b development partner procurment process, which saw CH2M withdraw from the running after being named preferred bidder, and Bechtel eventually sign the contract.

West started at HS2 in October 2012 having previously worked as head of commercial for the Thames tideway tunnel project and in various finance and risk roles at both Transport for London and London Underground.

During her four-and-a-half year stint at HS2, West has overseen the procurement process for a number of high value contracts covering £900M of enabling works, £8.6bn of main civils works and the £350M engineering delivery partner for phase 1.

She told New Civil Engineer last year that teams bidding for the main civils work packages could be offered the chance to cherry-pick which sections they wanted to work on.

“It is possible that we end up with four to seven outright winners but if [a team comes out top on three or more lots] we will ask for preferences. We may also have preferences in terms of geography and natural pairings.”

HS2 said it was unable to comment at this time. Land Securities has been contacted for comment.

HS2 chair Sir David Higgins has previously strongly denied that the procurement process for the phase 2b development partner role was flawed.

He told a panel of MPs last month that Christopher Reynolds – a former HS2 Ltd chief of staff – should not have been working on CH2M’s bid.

HS2 also maintained that special measures had been put in place for both former interim chief executive Roy Hill and current chief executive Mark Thurston, who were both former CH2M employees, to avoid a conflict of interest.

 

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