The 2.7km-long Forth Replacement Crossing is to be built upstream of the existing road bridge across the Forth of Firth. It has been described as Scotland’s biggest infrastructure project for at least a generation.
The old bridge is suffering from corrosion and deemed not fit for purpose in the long term.
MSPs voted by 108-3 in favour of the bill, despite criticism from opponents of the new bridge that the money could be better spent on other things. Successful passage of the bill means that construction can now start next year, with the bridge scheduled to open to traffic in 2016.
Two contracting groups have been shortlisted to build the bridge:
- Forthspan : MT Hojgaard, Balfour Beatty, Bam Nuttall and Morgan Est (Danish firm MT Hojgaard replaced Vinci, which pulled out in the summer)
- Forth Crossing Constructors: Dragados, Hochtief, American Bridge International and Morrison Construction.
In addition, four groups are shortlisted for a £65m contract to upgrade the M9 Junction 1a as part of the Forth Replacement Crossing scheme.
- Morrison Construction
- Balfour Beatty/Morgan Sindall
- Sisk / Roadbridge
- Sir Robert McAlpine/Costain.