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Sat July 31 2021

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Alliance approach adopted for £1bn prisons programme

12 Jul The Ministry of Justice has chosen four Tier One building firms to work in alliance on its £1bn new prisons programme.

The alliance builds on the approach used at HMP Five Wells, being built by Kier
The alliance builds on the approach used at HMP Five Wells, being built by Kier

ISG, Kier, Laing O’Rourke and Wates will build four new prisons using an alliance form of contract, with all four contractors collaborating on a delivery.

The Alliance 4 New Prisons (A4NP) will initially develop the design for four new adult male prisons – the first of which will be at Full Sutton, in East Yorkshire, with three more locations yet to be confirmed.

The prisons will add 6,000 places to UK prison capacity.

The alliance will see the four contractors collaborating on a delivery methodology that prioritises standardised precast concrete components.

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The A4NP will develop a standardised design and construction approach that can be deployed across each of the four prison sites, building on the approach of the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) pathfinder common design prisons at HMP Five Wells and Glen Parva, with design team alliance Perfect Circle.

HMP Five Wells is a £253m prison in Wellingborough built by Kier, while Lendlease is building a new £170m facility at Glen Parva in Leicestershire.

ISG, Kier, Laing O’Rourke and Wates will now start a preconstruction period for their alliance contract, which is anticipated to conclude early in 2022 – ahead of construction proper at HMP Full Sutton in summer 2022.

Having contractors working together in alliance (as opposed to joint venture) is very much in vogue with current procurement thinking and is encouraed by the government's Construction Playbook, published last autumn as a blueprint for public procurement. It has been used quite widely in the water industry and was used by Highways England on its £1.5bn A14 upgrade recently, to form and integrated delivery team.

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