Glasgow Airport rail link
Seven of Europe's biggest construction companies are to bid to build a key element of the new rail link to Glasgow Airport.
A shortlist of BMV (Balfour Beatty, Morgan Est and Vinci joint venture), Carillion, Morrison Construction and Roadbridge/Sisk has been selected to bid for the construction of the 'St James Spur' - the main branch line viaduct stretching across the M8 to the new airport station.
The contract - expected to be worth between £90 million and £130 million - represents the most significant single element in the Glasgow Airport Rail Link (GARL) project.
The tender competition will now begin in spring 2009 with GARL scheduled to be operational in early 2013 in time for the Commonwealth Games in 2014.
Transport Minister Stewart Stevenson said:
"I am delighted by the great progress already being made on GARL, which will be delivered well in advance of the Commonwealth Games in 2014 to help Scotland capture the long term economic growth the Games will bring.
"Through Transport Scotland, our continuing investment in major transport infrastructure projects is currently supporting hundreds of jobs in the Scottish construction industry.
"I am particularly pleased that seven major construction companies, either individually or in a consortium, are lining up to bid for this flagship public transport project in the West of Scotland.
"We are committed to delivering the project as efficiently as possible and have listened to the construction industry in order to take the necessary steps to protect the public purse."
Following the Office of Rail Regulation's recent Final Determination of Network Rail's costs for the period 2009-2014, the current estimated outturn cost range for the combined GARL-PCR project is £365.5m to £395m excluding VAT.
This figure cannot be compared to the original cost range for GARL as the project is now combined with a significant Network Rail signal renewal scheme (PCR) as outlined to Parliament by the Transport Minister on June 27, 2007.
Ron McAulay, Director Scotland Network Rail, said:
'Network Rail's resignalling of the Paisley Corridor, on track for delivery in December 2011, is a key enabler of the GARL project and we look forward to playing our role in delivering this major investment in Scotland's transport infrastructure."