Expressions of interest due back by end of next month

HS2 has blown the starting whistle in its search for a contractor to build a maintenance depot and control centre in Birmingham.

The contract – now worth an estimated £275m – will see the winning bidder turn the 30ha brownfield site at Washwood Heath into a facility with 14 sidings where trains can be stored overnight.

Washwood Heath 2

A Laing O’Rourke and Murphy joint venture finished clearing the site last year

When HS2 first published a prior information notice in January last year the job was expected to be worth £250m.

The depot will also include a 40,000sq m rolling stock maintenance building, carriage wash and automatic vehicle inspection building.

A Network Integrated Control Centre, the centre of the network’s signalling and control systems, will be built at the same site as well as office buildings for cleaners and drivers.

The Washwood Heath site was formerly home to the disused Metro-Cammell railway works which closed in 2004.

A team from HS2’s early works contractor, a joint venture between Laing O’Rourke and Murphy, completed demolition work last year.

Four bidders are expected to be shortlisted for the single-stage design and build contract in the summer with contract award in 2023.

Firms have until 31 March to register their interest in the job.