There have been some major transport infrastructure tenders in 2017, and there’s much more to come in 2018. As the Christmas break approaches, it’s a great time to reflect on the year that’s gone and the year ahead for opportunities in major transport tenders.
New Sydney Metro rail harbour tunnel
Digging under the world’s most famous harbour is an expensive job. $20.8 billion is the estimated cost of the Metro rail route, which will run from the city’s northwest, under the harbour and through the CBD, and down to Bankstown in the southwest.
Earlier this year, a consortium of John Holland, CPB Contractors and Ghella won the NSW Government’s $2.81 billion tunnelling contract for the second stage of the Sydney Metro urban rail project.
Preliminary work on the rail tunnel is underway around the harbour and five boring machines are expected to be in the ground by the end of next year.
Launching the project in June, NSW Transport Minister Andrew Constance said the new Sydney Metro line will eventually stretch 66km and connect dozens of suburbs.
“When services through the city start in 2024, the tunnels will move more people than the Harbour Bridge and Sydney Harbour Tunnel combined,” he said.
Sydney’s Metro Martin Place development
Dubbed ‘Metro Martin Place’, an unsolicited development proposal was put to the NSW Government by the Macquarie Group for Sydney’s revamped Martin Place Station. The proposal was put forward as a unique opportunity to combine the Metro station, development above the station, and Macquarie Group’s headquarters.
The development proposal progressed to Stage 3 earlier in 2017, which meant Macquarie was able to develop a final and binding proposal that remains subject to NSW Cabinet approval.
Stage 3 represents the Negotiation of Final Binding Offer, including the finalisation of all outstanding issues with a view to entering into a binding agreement, if the NSW Government decides to accept the final offer.
In July, the Institute of Architects objected to the plan, saying significant developments such as that above Martin Place should be undertaken through a public tender process.
A decision by government on the Macquarie development proposal is expected in early 2018.
Central Station underway
In June, three groups were shortlisted to help revitalise Sydney’s Central Station, including delivering the underground Central Walk concourse and Sydney Metro platforms at the city’s biggest railway station. The groups invited to tender for the Central Station Main Works contract were:
- Laing O’Rourke
- CPB Contractors and John Holland Joint Venture
- Lendlease Engineering/Lendlease Building.
These groups submitted their proposals in October and eagerly await the result in the new year.
Sydney Metro West
Sydney Metro West is an underground metro railway that will link the Parramatta and Sydney CBDs, and communities in between. Four key precincts to be serviced have initially been identified at:
- Parramatta, where the number of jobs is expected to double over the next 20 years to 100,000.
- Sydney Olympic Park, where 34,000 jobs and more than 23,000 residents will be located by 2030.
- The Bays Precinct, Sydney’s new innovation hub where 95 hectares of land is being regenerated.
- The Sydney CBD, allowing easy access to the existing public transport network and Stages 1 and 2 of Sydney Metro, which is currently under construction.
Community, stakeholder and industry consultation will now help shape Sydney Metro West’s development, including the alignment and potential station locations.
Parramatta Light Rail
Parramatta Light Rail Stage 1 will connect Westmead to Carlingford via Parramatta CBD and Camellia with a two-way track spanning 12 kilometres. This will be the first stage of the Parramatta Light Rail project and is expected to open in 2023.
Five consortia consisting of the world’s best light rail builders and operators have been shortlisted for two contracts to deliver Stage 1 of the Parramatta Light Rail project.
The shortlists for the two major contracts for Stage 1 are:
Infrastructure Works (major construction including urban design):
- CPB Contractors and Downer EDI Works Joint Venture
- John Holland.
Supply, Operate and Maintain (supply vehicles, design and construct stabling and maintenance facility, systems, and operations and maintenance):
- Connecting Parramatta Consortium: consisting of John Holland, ALSTOM Transport, and Deutsche Bahn
- Greater Parramatta: Downer EDI Rail, with Keolis Downer, Downer EDI Works, Ansaldo STS Australia and CRRC Changchun
- Great River City Light Rail: consisting of Transdev, Construcciones y Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles (CAF) and Laing O’Rourke.
Shortlisted bidders will now be asked to submit a formal proposal, with both contracts to be awarded in 2018.
Western Sydney Airport
Set to open in 2026, Western Sydney Airport is a transformational infrastructure project that will generate economic activity, and provide employment opportunities closer to home for people in the Western Sydney region.
The Australian Government established a government-owned company, WSA Co, and is investing up to $5.3 billion in equity to deliver the airport. WSA Co will be responsible for construction of the airport.
In November 2017, WSA Co announced its procurement strategy. There will be three packages of work, with the first and largest encompassing first stage earthworks and utilities and airside pavements. Expressions of Interest for this first package will be released in February 2018.
The second major package will be the terminal building and associated airside and landside interface works. The third will include the landside roads, car parks and associated works.
Regional Rail Project
In August 2017, the NSW Government announced it would replace all trains operating on the regional network including 60 XPTs and more than 50 XPLORER and Endeavour passenger cars.
Replacing the regional rail fleet includes the design, build, financing and maintenance of a new train fleet and a new maintenance facility to be designed and constructed in regional NSW.
Following extensive industry engagement, market sounding workshops and an Expression of Interest process, three applicants have now been shortlisted to participate in the tender process. The three successful applicants are Regional Futures, led by Downer, Bombardier Consortium and Momentum Trains, led by CAF.
The aim is to award a contract by early 2019.
WestConnex M4-M5 Link
Two joint ventures have been shortlisted to build the $7.2 billion M4-M5 Link in New South Wales, which was announced by Premier Gladys Berejiklian and Minister for WestConnex Stuart Ayres during a visit to the new M4 site. The two joint ventures, John Holland CPB Contractors joint venture and LendLease Samsung Bouygues joint venture, were shortlisted to tender for the design and construction of the mainline tunnel between Haberfield and St Peters.
Brisbane’s Cross River Rail
Cross River Rail is an underground rail line through central Brisbane and under the Brisbane River, which is currently under construction. The business case for the project was released in August 2017, with work officially beginning in September.
Cross River Rail comprises two major packages of work - a Rail, Integration and Systems Alliance (RIS) and a Tunnel, Stations and Development (TSD) public-private partnership (PPP).
The RIS package involves design, supply, and installation management of key work disciplines across the full geographic area of the project, including rail signalling, communications and rail operating systems.
Procurement commenced with a Registration for the Expression of Interest (EOI) on September 5, 2017 and EOI shortlisting and RFP release will happen in Jan-Feb 2018.
The target date for award of the RIS Alliance is late 2018 and award of the TSD PPP is expected in early to mid 2019.
With Sydney and Brisbane providing massive scope for transport tenders in the coming year, it’s a timely reminder of the need for transport tenders written to succeed.