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Balfour Beatty team wins Melbourne rail contract

21 Dec 11 An alliance of Balfour Beatty, Thiess and Sinclair Knight Merz has been awarded an AU$835m (£535m) contract for work on the Regional Rail Link project in Melbourne, Australia.

Balfour Beatty has a 35% share in the alliance. Its professional services business Parsons Brinckerhoff will also work on the scheme.

The alliance partners will work with the Regional Rail Link Authority, Metro Trains Melbourne and V/Line to design and construct the first major new rail line for metropolitan Melbourne in 80 years. The regional rail link will separate regional trains from metropolitan trains for the first time, giving trains dedicated tracks and hence increasing capacity and reliability.

The project involves the construction of 7.5km of new track, rail bridges, a new station at West Footscray and upgrades and improvements to the current infrastructure. Balfour Beatty will put in place the rail systems including signalling and track and will act as the programme manager for the project. Major works are expected to start in early 2012.

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Balfour Beatty chief executive Ian Tyler, said: “The Melbourne rail contract win is really pleasing from a number of perspectives. Firstly, as a global player in rail technology, we are pleased to play a part in this historical development for rail in Australia - a buoyant market where we are developing a healthy market position.

“Furthermore, it is rewarding to see our strategy in action. We have harnessed our skills and capabilities in rail as well as in Parsons Brinckerhoff to gain a position as a joint-venture partner in the design and construction of a complex rail project. This win aptly demonstrates the success of our strategy to integrate the group’s capabilities to manage complexity for our customers.”

Theiss regional general manager Rod Heale said that the alliance delivery model would provide the client with an optimal solution drawing on the skills and expertise of local and worldwide rail specialists. “We have worked closely with our alliance partners through the selection process to develop a programme of works that addresses engineering challenges, community expectations and that will be experienced on a complex project like this,” he said. “We are confident that our team has the right skills, experience and innovative thinking to successfully deliver the project, while minimising disruption to rail services and ensuring the safety of everybody.”

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