Now that £1.25bn tunnelling jobs are confirmed, focus turns to main works on four major stations

The five major Crossrail contracting consortiums are already gearing up to bid for the four major station contracts, in the week after the single biggest suite of jobs for the £15.5bn scheme was let.

Andy Mitchell, Crossrail’s programme, fired the starting gun on bidding for the main works to the line’s stations this week. He said the body would invite tenders for the jobs, all worth hundreds of millions of pounds, “in the very early part of the new year”.

Mitchell said: “If 2010 was about getting the tunnels procured, then next year for Crossrail is the year of procuring the stations.”

The four biggest jobs are the main works for Bond Street, Tottenham Court Road, Liverpool Street and Whitechapel stations, each worth up to £250m.

Contractors are mostly believed to be sticking with the existing consortiums for these large station contracts. A spokesperson confirmed that the partnership of Costain, Bilfinger Berger and Skanska is to stick together for its bids, despite being unsuccessful in bidding for the major tunnelling jobs. However, the consortium of Balfour Beatty, Morgan Sindall and Vinci is understood to be considering bidding separately for smaller jobs.

The news came as the body confirmed late last week it had awarded the four biggest tunnelling jobs for the rail line, worth £1.25bn in total, to three consortiums.

A joint venture between Bam Nuttall, Ferrovial and Kier will build the western tunnels and the carry out the sprayed concrete linings for Bond Street and Tottenham Court Road stations, thought to be worth £550m in total.

Irish contractor Sisk and Spanish builder Dragados will dig the £450m eastern tunnels, while the Balfour Beatty, Morgan Sindall and Vinci consortium won the £250m concrete lining job for Whitechapel and Liverpool Street stations.