Council will now ask contractors and ICT firms to bid seperately

The £200m Portsmouth Building Schools for the Future contract is to be reprocured after there were too few bidders. This will delay the scheme by at least two months.

A lack of interest from ICT firms has caused problems, as it has meant no contractors have been able to form a bidding consortium following a call for expressions of interest. The procurement route for the scheme will now be changed, with construction and ICT firms bidding separately. An Official Journal notice is expected to be issued in September.

Local press reports claim that the council has now been forced to dip into a £1m contingency fund to keep procurement on the scheme running.

Councillor John Ireland said: “We need to be able to ensure robust competition to drive out the best value for our money. Portsmouth council feels that we are best placed to do this by procuring the construction and ICT contracts separately. We are confident this will encourage the very best ICT and construction companies to bid to deliver our programme, stimulate the bidding market and keep our ambitious programme on track to deliver.”

The programme will include 12 secondary schools, of which four will be PFI new build and the remainder involving design and build refurbishment.