Client HS2 Ltd shortlists firms for key roles on branches of the high speed line north of Birmingham

HS2 has shortlisted a clutch of top consultants for key roles on the two branches of the high speed line north of Birmingham.

Bechtel, CH2M and a Mace and Turner & Townsend joint venture have been shortlisted for the development partner role, worth £170m.

Meanwhile, four teams are in the running for civils design and environmental services roles, worth £350m. The first is Aecom, Atkins and Spain-based INECO, the second is Arup, the third is an Atkins and Arcadis joint venture, and finally Mott MacDonald with WSP.

All the teams will be invited to tender to provide more detailed bids.

The winning firms will work on the design of the HS2 sections between Crewe and Manchester, and Birmingham and Leeds, via Sheffield and the East Midlands.

A separate contract will be awarded to provide support to HS2 Ltd in managing work to enable a hybrid bill to be prepared for this section of the line.

The government is expected to make a decision on the phase two route this autumn.

HS2 Ltd chief executive Simon Kirby said:

“Phase Two will significantly increase capacity, enhance connectivity and improve journeys for millions of people travelling between London, the Midlands and the major cities of the north.

“HS2 will be Britain’s largest infrastructure development, and has the potential to change the way the UK designs and builds projects of national significance.

“That’s why it’s so important that we get the right team on board to help us develop the design and environmental assessment that supports obtaining the hybrid Bill powers. This process needs to start now so that we are able to open all the way to Manchester and Leeds on time.”