HS2 to make firms name all people involved in bids

Aaron Morby 3 years ago
Share

HS2 will overhaul bidding procedures for future contracts in the wake of its development partner contract fiasco.

Sir David Higgins tells select committee there is no need to rerun development partner tender process
Sir David Higgins tells select committee there is no need to rerun development partner tender process

Sir David Higgins, HS2 chairman, said the body would now tighten up disclosure procedures after US consultant CH2M withdrew from a preferred development partner role on the second phase of HS2.

He revealed the move to tighten up bid requirements as he was quizzed by the Transport Select Committee about events leading up to CH2M being selected as preferred contractor.

CH2M had faced conflict of interest allegations from rival bidder Mace, after HS2’s former chief of staff Christopher Reynolds produced lessons learnt documents from phase one to inform the second phase development partner tender process.

After leaving HS2 last June, Reynolds went to work for CH2M in September.

Higgins said that HS2 had no evidence that Reynolds had influenced CH2M’s bid. But despite this CH2M withdrew “for their own reasons”, revealed Higgins.

HS2 now intends to rewrite bid documents to force contractors and consultants to name all people involved in the bidding process.

He said conflict of interest clauses would be strengthened as part of the due diligence process.

“We do intended to tighten it up following this exercise. In future we will say you need to disclose to us who you intend to use on your tendering.

“It will give us more of a chance to be able to scrutinise this ourselves.”

He added: “It is something we will tighten in our tendering process – but this tendering process is standard practice, it’s used on every major engineering and civil contract to date.

“I have to say with the publicity that surrounds this, there would not be a contractor or engineering firm in the UK now that will not be very focused on declaring conflict of interest.”

Higgins also confirmed that second placed Bechtel would now be awarded the contract after its bid came in 15% cheaper than third placed Mace.

In a statement after the hearing, a Mace spokespersons said: “As the Transport Select Committee has shown there are a lot of serious questions to be answered around HS2’s procurement process.

“If we hadn’t raised these concerns, these serious issues would never have come out.”

“David Higgins admitted that HS2 needs to tighten up their process is an admission that the procurement was seriously flawed.

“It’s remarkable that he also admitted that if CH2M hadn’t withdrawn, they would have been sacked – which is a clear admission that their procurement process was riddled with errors.

“Over the past 26 years we have bid on thousands of projects, but we have never yet taken a case to the High Court. This tells you how seriously we take the matter.”

Latest news

Kier wins £160m Area 4 highways upkeep deal

Maintenance work to start in November on Kent and Sussex roads
2 hours ago

23 demolition firms win places on Scottish framework

Demolition framework for Scottish council and housing associations
3 hours ago

Amey clinches £240m deal to upkeep three major bridges

South west major structures inspection and maintenance worth £16m a year
3 hours ago

Shed builder Winvic hails £29m rail freight terminal win

Vast concrete pour to start in weeks on 30,000m3 terminal storage slab
2 hours ago

Vinci replaces Galliford Try on £26m cancer centre

Demolition work completed by Galliford Try but client brings in new contractor
1 day ago

Aecom to cut up to 500 jobs

Consultant starts redundancy consultation as it "re-shapes" the business
10 hours ago

Squibb lands demolition deal on £220m Woolwich site

Year-long demolition of old Woolwich estate starts this month
7 hours ago

Morgan Sindall confident of second half profit surge

Post lockdown recovery continues as £9.3m of furlough cash to be handed back to government
11 hours ago

M&E specialist Lorne Stewart battles to stem losses

Harrow-based building services specialist begins to curb losses
12 hours ago

Worker crushed to death on Tottenham demolition site

Wall and roof collapses at two-storey industrial building
20 hours ago

Countryside picked for £124m Bracknell housing plan

Over 400 homes to be built on three council-owned sites in town centre
12 hours ago

Balfour to reopen concrete plant after Covid outbreak

Track and trace investigations show no-one affected at Hinkley where segments are supplied
1 day ago

Robertson lands Preston research centre contract

University of Sheffield picks main contractor for £20m scheme
1 day ago

300 “shovel ready” schemes get £900m funding boost

Government confirms schemes receiving cash from the Getting Building Fund
1 day ago

2021 workload rebound but to 6.4% below pre-Covid level

Construction forecasters bank on V-shaped recovery next year
1 day ago

Plans unveiled for new 40-acre Crewe warehouse scheme

Construction of 800,000 sq ft of space on former BAE factory site
1 day ago

Manchester wellbeing centre developer eyes three more sites

Construction to start next year on £250m Manchester scheme followed by trio of new venues
2 days ago

Willmott Dixon wins £31m Rotherham housing deal

Over 170 homes to be built for Rother Living
2 days ago

Gaysha acquires fit-out firm GS Contracts

Latest acquisition for expanding London refurb contractor
2 days ago

More than 600 consultants fight to win framework places

EN:Procure picks 70 winners for £10m deal: Full details
2 days ago

Keep the industry updated by joining the Enquirer Directory

Membership lets construction know you are open for business as recovery gathers momentum
2 years ago

Clancy drops Docwra name and exits multi-utility work

Clancy to sharpen focus on water and energy work
2 days ago

Renaker go-ahead for Manchester twin towers

Phase 2 of Crown Street scheme approved by planners
2 days ago

Laing O’Rourke wins £123m sewage works upgrade

Three-year upgrade of Beckton works to start early next year
3 days ago

Cruden goes into administration with 100 job losses

KPMG now winding down contractor after Covid-19 was "the final straw"
5 days ago

Demolition worker fights for her life after site accident

Shannon Brasier, 20, in coma at Royal London Hospital
5 days ago

Sisk to repay Covid-19 staff wage cuts

Around 600 staff to recoup deductions made over three months
5 days ago

Worker crushed to death at precast concrete plant

Safety inspectors uncover a series of problems at Treanor Pujol site
2 days ago

Build UK contractors hold payment times during Covid-19

Six main contractors paying within 30 days
5 days ago

McAlpine to cut 6% of staff after strategy review

Regional and market Covid-19 review leads to 132 job losses
6 days ago

Contractor services