Winners of HS2 building contracts revealed

Cheryl Sanders
July 17, 2017

Construction company Carillion have been named as one of the winners of £6.6billion worth of contracts awarded by the Government for the development of the controversial HS2 rail line.

Past year it was agreed that the line should serve the existing station at Sheffield, with plans for a link to Meadowhall scrapped.

But this could see new homes in nearby Mexborough being pulled down, with numerous estate's residents finding out about the possibility just weeks after moving in.

"This iconic rail infrastructure project will create significant opportunities for the United Kingdom construction industry and will drive growth in skills, jobs and prosperity".

The firm suffered a dramatic collapse in its share price last week after announcing a profit warning which saw nearly £600 million wiped from its value.

The firm's interim chief executive, Keith Cochrane, said: "We are delighted that our joint venture, CEK, has been selected to deliver two of the three Central contracts for HS2 Phase 1, the London to Birmingham section of the route, reflecting the strength of our joint venture".

The routes, from Crewe to Manchester and from the West Midlands to Leeds, were laid out last November.

A number of foreign firms were successful in bidding for the work, including Swedish-based Skanska, French company Bouygues Travaux and Austria's Strabag.

"HS2 will deliver vital links between some of our country's biggest cities, helping to drive economic growth and productivity in the north and midlands", said transport secretary Chris Grayling.

United Kingdom companies Carillion, Costain and Balfour Beatty are among the consortia who will build tunnels, bridges and embankments on the first stretch of the new high speed rail line.

"We will now press ahead with building the line, while continuing to ensure affected communities get appropriate support and are treated with fairness, compassion and respect".

Grayling published Monday a new government bill for the next phase of HS2, from Birmingham to Crewe in northern England.

A Department for Transport spokesman said Mr Byng's claims were "incorrect" and insisted: "We are keeping a tough grip on costs and the project is on time and on budget at £55.7bn".

Plans were also confirmed to extend the route from Birmingham to the north west, East Midlands and Yorkshire. HS2 is a real opportunity for British steel to shine.

Preparatory works are already underway, with main construction work starting in 2018/19 following a period of detailed design work.

However, critics of the scheme condemn its financial and environmental cost.

He told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "Anyone who travels by train today knows that in and around our big cities the railway lines are congested and the trains are full".

HS2 trains will serve Sheffield by running along a spur on existing track into the city's main station and then out again to eventually rejoin the high-speed line.

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