‘Huge milestone’ achieved in bringing HS2 development to Cumbria
Plans to extend Britain’s new high speed railway from the Midlands to the North took a giant leap forward this week as HS2 Ltd announced that it has begun the search for a team of specialist ground investigation contractors. The single framework contract which is worth around GBP300m, will include the appointment of a lead ‘Ground Investigation Partner’ supported by up to ten specialist ground investigation contractors to deliver the sophisticated programme of work. This flexible approach will allow HS2 Ltd to call on as much technical expertise as required, depending on design needs and the outcome of the government’s Integrated Rail Plan, which is expected to be published later this year.
John Stevenson, the Conservative Party Member of Parliament for the Carlisle constituency, spoke with praise on the matter, and said: “I am delighted to see this. “This is, of course, the whole point of a railway to be whole and connected, and seeing it near its completion is great. “Carlisle will be a part of it as well.”
As part of the government’s plans to build back better and deliver economic benefits and improved transport links to the North quicker, the Government has instructed HS2 Ltd to proceed with legislation for the Western leg of Phase 2b – from Crewe to Manchester as a priority. This will vastly improve connectivity, create thousands of new jobs and business opportunities, and help to rebalance the UK’s economy into the next decade and beyond. HS2’s Procurement and Supply Chain Director, Andrew Cubitt, said: “This framework agreement is an important step in our plans to bring HS2 to the North.
“It will enable us to procure a comprehensive body of ground investigation data to inform our future civil engineering works.
“The structure of the framework agreement means that more than ten contractors could benefit from the opportunities we are creating, which comes at a vital time for UK businesses seeking stability and growth as we strive to recover from the effects of the pandemic.”
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