English Partnerships uses competitive tendering for the purchase of all construction services. For works packages between £25,000 and the EU threshold, currently slightly more than £3.8m, a minimum of three formal competitive tenders will be used. Generally, four or five tenders will be invited.
If procurement is via a two-stage approach, with bidders initially being asked for outline details, then six to 10 tenders could be invited for the first stage, with three or four being invited to submit detailed proposals. Projects over the EU threshold will follow the European Communities' public procurement regulations and be published in the Official Journal.
Current and future projects
The total value of projects supported by English Partnerships is much bigger than its actual capital spend, because of the contributions it receives from other parties. In its Corporate Plans to 2003/04, it forecast an investment programme of £240m in 2002/03 and £219m in 2003/04.
EP is involved in a number of large regeneration projects across the country and a complete listing is given on its website. In Warrington it is working with Miller Developments and the Royal Bank of Scotland on the £1bn redevelopment of the Burtonwood Airbase. This mixed-use development, which comprises offices, industrial space, residential properties, leisure and possibly hotel and conference facilities, is expected to take 25 years to complete.
In London, EP has signed a development agreement with Meridian Delta on the future use of the Millennium Dome and the wider regeneration of the Greenwich Peninsula. Meridian Delta, a joint venture partnership between Lend Lease Europe and Quintain Estates & Development, expects the total value of the development to be up to £4bn.
EP is also involved in major regeneration schemes in Preston, Stockton-on-Tees, Basildon and Northampton and has been ask by deputy prime minister John Prescott to look at ways of accelerating the housebuilding programme in the South-east, especially for affordable housing.
EP was created in May 1999 by the merger of the Commission for the New Towns and the Urban Regeneration Agency. In July 2002, John Prescott set a new mandate for EP to increase the amount of affordable housing in England, to build new communities, support areas of economic decline, and make the best use of the nation's scarce supply of land. To achieve these goals, EP works with the private sector, the Housing Corporation, regional development agencies, government offices and local authorities.
In 2001/02, the lifetime outputs from projects created or safeguarded 14,830 jobs, built 932,000 m2 of commercial or industrial space, reclaimed 78 ha of land, built 1750 homes and attracted £821m of private investment.
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