It will be the first significant construction contract at the Hinkley Point nuclear power station being planned by French utility giant EDF Energy with the prize contract being a £1.2bn main civils deal.
The earthworks contract will involve moving 4.5 million cu m of rock and earth to make way for the new power station in Somerset.
A heavyweight pairing of Balfour Beatty and Vinci is up against Costain/Sir Robert McAlpine and Kier/Bam Nuttall for the clearance job.
Two other teams – Laing O’Rourke/Bouygues and Carillion/Eiffage – both failed to make the latest cut for the earthworks package which will start on site in January and last for two years.
The Kier/Bam Nuttall team has already won the first construction contract at the site having signed a £4m site preparation deal with EDF last month.
Costain/Sir Robert McAlpine is also one of five bidding for a £250m tunnelling contract at the site with a winner due to be announced early next year.
The Kier/Bam Nuttall team is also pitching and has added Bam-owned German tunnelling specialist Wayss & Freytag to beef up its bid. The others on the list are Morgan Sindall, Hochtief and Murphy.
This work will involve building a pair of 3 km long intake tunnels along with a 2 km long outfall tunnel plus a series of sea shafts.
EDF is letting the main civils package through a two stage tender with a clutch of teams due to find out this November who has made it through to the final round of bidding.
A winner is due to be chosen next Easter with work starting the following year for a finish in 2016. EDF wants the station, known as Hinkley C, up and running by 2017.
The five teams bidding the main civils package are: Balfour Beatty/Vinci; Laing O’Rourke/Bouygues; Carillion/Eiffage; Costain/Sir Robert McAlpine and Kier/Bam Nuttall/Skanska/URS.