American firm will oversee central, twin-tunneled section of £15.9bn railway and manage design process

Crossrail has appointed US construction giant, Bechtel, as project delivery partner to the £15.9bn scheme.

Having scooped the £400m prize, Bechtel will now be responsible for overseeing the central, twin-tunnelled section of the cross-London railway and will also manage the design process. It joins the Transcend Team on the project, which includes American firm, Aecom. The joint venture was confirmed as Crossrail programme partner last week.

There are high hopes for the project’s ability to deliver wealth to the London area during construction. At its height, over 14,000 people are expected to work on Crossrail. London mayor Boris Johnson played down any concerns of the second US firm walking away with a big slice of work. He said: “We anticipate that the vast majority of the jobs required to fulfil these contracts will be created in London and the UK, which can only be good news for the capital.”

When completed in 2017, Crossrail will link Maidenhead in the west via Heathrow, central London and the City, to Abbey Wood in the east and will carry 1.5m passengers.

In line with European procurement requirements, there will be a minimum 10 day stand-still period before the award of contract can be confirmed.

Bechtel beat Legacy 3, a joint venture between Parsons Brinckerhoff, Balfour Beatty Management and Davis Langdon Programme Management; Laing O'Rourke; and a joint venture between Capita Symonds and Northcroft to the contract.