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NCE Live News Updates 24 June 2013: Plans submitted for Crossrail Farringdon development

Fresh plans have been submitted for commercial development above Farringdon Crossrail station; Balfour Beatty Hong Kong subsidiary lands £720M road deal.

4.30pm: Hong Kong contractor Gammon Construction – which is half owned by UK construction giant Balfour Beatty – has secured a £720M road deal.

The firm will design and build the Southern Connection Viaduct section of the Tuen Men to Chek Lap Kok link road in Hong Kong.

Work is due to start later this year, with completion scheduled for  April 2017.

Balfour Beatty chief executive Andrew McNaughton said: “It’s great news that this project will generate more than 1,500 local jobs. It demonstrates the value that investment in big infrastructure projects can bring to the local economy.”


4.15pm: Plans have been submitted for a major commercial development above the Crossrail station in Farringdon.

Crossrail submitted proposals to City of London Corporation for a five-floor building containing column-free office space and retail units on the ground floor.

Designed by PLP Architecture, it is one of two over-station developments planned in Farringdon.

Crossrail land & property director Ian Lindsay said: “Crossrail will help transform Farringdon into one of London’s biggest transport interchanges and a destination in its own right.”


3.15pm: Indian rail officials have visited London to learn about planning for suburban railways.

The group, headed by Ministry of Urban Development secretary Dr Sudhir Krishna, travelled to see Network Rail.

They received a presentation on the body’s operational challenges and achievements and are said to have showed a keen interest in the structure of the rail industry in the UK.

Network Rail Consulting business development director for India Sanjay Jamuar said: “The delegation’s tour was the result of a memorandum of understanding, signed last year between the UK and Indian governments, to encourage co-operation between the two countries on urban regeneration and development.


2.30pm: WSP and Genivar executive chairman Chris Cole is to become non-executive chairman of the merged consultant.

The move will be effective from 1 July, just under a year after he was appointed to the role to oversee the merger of the two businesses.

Genivar president Pierre Shoiry will remain head of the combined operation, and will become president of WSP Global when the name change comes into effect on 1 January.

Cole told NCE last year that further acquisitions could be made in 2013.


11.45am: The Treasury has set up a new unit to represent the public sector on boards of new PF2 projects with the aim of enabling it to better manage its public private partnerships.

The PF2 Equity Unit will ensure the public sector manages its future stake in infrastructure including schools and hospitals.

In December, the government announced it would act as a minority shareholder in PF2 projects. These equity investments will be managed a dedicated team located in Infrastructure UK (IUK). The unit’s staff will be made up of commercial and finance specialists, many of whom will come from the private sector.

Margaret Bonsall has been appointed to set up the PF2 Equity Unit. As Head of PF2 Investments, she will evaluate prospective investments, sit on the board of PF2 project companies and regularly review the performance of PF2 equity holdings. She will be responsible to the IUK chief executive Geoffrey Spence, who will oversee the activities of the unit.


10am: Network Rail has revealed details of a £40M investment in improvements to the West Coast Main Line.

The investment will be spread across a range of projects aimed at improving perfomance such as overhead line improvements, security fencing alongside the rail line and suicide prevention measures.

“I am pleased that Network Rail has decided to progress all the recommendations and make a £40M investment to improve performance on the southern end of West Coast Main Line for our customers,” said Virgin Trains chief operating officer Chris Gibb.

“Already we are starting to see that investment actually taking place but both Network rail and the train operators need to keep the pressure on to ensure that lasting improvements in performance are achieved.”

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