London Underground (LU) yesterday officially announced its intention to award the contract to design and build the Northern line extension from Kennington to Battersea via Nine Elms to Ferrovial Agroman Laing O’Rourke. The contract, worth approximately £500M, will be for six years and covers the main construction works.
The proposed start of construction for the Northern line extension is spring 2015.
The full cost of the scheme is expected to be up to £1bn, which is being funded entirely through developer contributions from Battersea Power Station and other developers and, from 2016, a new Enterprise Zone.
This contract award is the culmination of a competitive procurement process that began last year when LU issued an OJEU notice asking for expressions of interest from the industry for the design and build contract for the Northern line extension. A public inquiry to consider the Transport and Works Act Order application to extend the Northern line ran from 19 November to 20 December 2013 and was conducted by an independent Inspector. A decision on the Order is anticipated in autumn this year. LU has now completed its evaluation and negotiations and following a 10-day standstill period required by European law LU will enter into contract with Ferrovial Agroman Laing O’Rourke.
LU is carrying out a huge programme of modernisation, with major stations, trains, track and signalling being modernised or replaced to provide more capacity for a growing city. The line upgrades are at the core of LU’s investment programme, which will deliver more than 30% increase in capacity. The upgrade programme is being delivered over the coming years, with work on upgrades to the Northern, Circle, District, Hammersmith & City and Metropolitan lines well underway.
Redevelopment work to increase capacity at key stations and make them step-free, is underway at a number of stations including Victoria, Tottenham Court Road and Bond Street and more than half of London Underground’s 270 stations have now been modernised or refurbished to make them brighter and easier to use, with improvements such as tactile strips, better CCTV and help points, electronic information displays in ticket halls and on platforms, and improved seating and lighting.
Subject to funding and permission to build and operate the extension, the new stations at Nine Elms and Battersea could be open by 2020.