Network Rail tenders £1.4 billion Midlands Rail Hub programme with NEC4 ALC

Network Rail tenders £1.4 billion Midlands Rail Hub programme with NEC4 ALC

NEC Users’ Group platinum member Network Rail has adopted the NEC4 Alliance Contract (ALC) to procure the proposed £1.4 billion Midlands Rail Hub programme in the UK. A market notice was published in November 2023 followed by an online market engagement session in January 2024.

Once completed, the hub will provide additional rail services between central Birmingham and key Midlands cities and transport hubs. It will involve a programme of infrastructure works including new platforms and sidings, two new chords into Birmingham Moor Street Station, viaduct widening, power supply upgrades, new freight loops, new overhead line equipment, signalling works and remodelling of track layouts. 

Alliance delivery model

Network Rail plans to use an alliance delivery model with alliance members consisting of Network Rail as client, a non-signalling partner and a signalling partner. Subject to funding agreement from the Department for Transport, non-signalling works are likely to account for around £1.05 billion and signalling works will be in the region of £350 million. 

The contract will be a newly developed version of the NEC4 ALC called the NR35 Alliance Contract, which is intended to replace Network Rail’s bespoke alliance contracts. Tailored to reflect the company’s approach to alliancing, it brings the total of number of NR versions of NEC4 contracts to 13. There will also be some amendments specific to the Midlands Rail Hub.

The outline business case for the Midlands Rail Hub was launched by Midlands Connect, the sub-national transport body for the Midlands, in December 2022. Subject to funding, the project could begin construction in 2028 and be completed by the early 2030s.

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