Cheaper price wins Byrne contract despite expectations that rival would secure job

Mace has awarded Byrne Brothers the concrete package for the £425m Shard tower at London Bridge – a deal worth just under £50m.

Mace appointed Byrne this week ahead of rival Doyle Group, which had been working with Mace on its bid. Doyle had been expected to secure the job once Mace signed its contract with developer London Bridge Quarter earlier this month.

However, it is understood that Byrne Brothers had also been interested in the contract for the past two or three months, and offered a cheaper price for a different form of concrete.

The development comes after it emerged that Cleveland Bridge is to be dropped from the £50m steelwork package on the contract and replaced with Severfield-Rowen.

One source close to the project said: “This is the way contracting is going now. The market is very tight, and relationships with the supply chain contractors are coming under pressure.”

The client on the 310m-high tower, part of the London Bridge Quarter, has told Mace it expects practical completion of the project by May 2012. Mace is building the tower under a guaranteed maximum price deal, after originally proposing the construction management route.