HS2 could generate £200 million in rentals

10 December 2013

The first phase of HS2 is for 140 miles of high speed railway between London and Birmingham.

The first phase of HS2 is for 140 miles of high speed railway between London and Birmingham.

The first phase of the proposed HS2 high speed railway project - between London and Birmingham - will cost around £10 billion in construction and could generate rental revenues of more than £200 million, said the Construction Plant-hire Association (CPA).

Preliminary designs for the project – which has not yet been given the go-ahead by the UK government – require earthworks totalling 60 million m3, and there will be a major demand for earthmoving machinery and other support plant.

The CPA reported that HS2 Ltd’s recent supply chain conference for the project highlighted the need for long term planning of earthmoving machine capacity.

Current HS2 chairman, Doug Oakervee, emphasised that safety would be given a high priority on the project, with CPA reporting that HS2 was looking for a “further step change” in safety management.

CPA said HS2‘s environmental statement and its subsidiary code of construction practice include references to air quality effects during construction, and that plant hire firms that demonstrate compliance may have an advantage in tendering for work.

The latest technology is also likely to be encouraged, said CPA. During the meeting, HS2 technical director Professor Andrew McNaughton quoted the example of excavators equipped with GPS levelling control systems. CPA said companies that can provide such expertise will “have the edge”.

HS2 Ltd is seeking early involvement in the project by contractors and service suppliers like rental companies and has encouraged them to register with CompeteFor, the online supply chain management website developed for the 2012 London Olympics and now operating for other major capital infrastructure projects.

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