Four firms are lined up for a £55m private finance initiative higher education scheme in Hatfield, Hertfordshire.

Jarvis, Carillion, Focus Education (a Bovis-led consortium) and Norwich Union PPP, a consortium including Kvaerner, have been shortlisted for the scheme to build and operate sports facilities and halls of residence at the University of Hertfordshire.

The university will send invitations to negotiate to the four contenders by the end of November. They have until March to compile a bid to design, construct, fund and operate the facilities.

The university expects to select a preferred bidder by next summer and reach financial close by the end of 2000. The winner will have a concession to operate the facilities for 25 years.

The project is to include accommodation for 1600 students, a 25 m swimming pool, a 12-court badminton hall, gym and games pitches.

  • Jarvis, Ecovert and Accord have been shortlisted for a £23m PFI grouped-schools scheme for Brent Education Authority.

The project involves refurbishing and maintaining 33 schools in the London borough for 25 years. These are 31 primary and two secondary schools.

The authority expects to reach financial close by June next year, with work starting on 1 September 2000.