Powering the Future: Costain, Arcadis, Colas, and More Shortlisted for Multi-Million Pound HS2 High Voltage Project

Posted on 29 March 2021

Costain, Arcadis, and Colas are among the four highly esteemed teams that have been shortlisted for a significant high-voltage power supply system contract for HS2, with a value surpassing £500 million. This contract holds tremendous importance as it encompasses a vast 280-kilometre stretch of the line, seamlessly connecting the bustling cities of London, Birmingham, and Crewe, where HS2 trains will eventually link with the esteemed West Coast mainline railway.

The team that emerges as the chosen one from this rigorous selection process will shoulder the responsibility of constructing and establishing approximately 50 traction sub-stations strategically positioned along the London-Crewe route. These sub-stations will play a pivotal role in efficiently delivering power from the esteemed National Grid to the high-speed trains that will traverse the tracks of HS2. The responsibilities of the selected team do not end there. To the sub-stations, they will be entrusted with the task of creating a robust and cutting-edge high-voltage non-traction power network. This network will serve as the backbone, supplying power to various vital components of the railway infrastructure, including stations, shafts, portals, depots, and numerous other crucial railway systems throughout the entire HS2 route.

Arcadis, a renowned global design and consultancy firm, has formed a formidable consortium by joining forces with the esteemed contracting arm of SSE, a prominent utility company. Furthermore, they have partnered with Linxon, an impressive joint venture that brings together the expertise and resources of two industry giants, Hitachi and SNC-Lavalin, the proud owner of Atkins. Linxon, which boasts its headquarters in the vibrant city of Baden, Switzerland, maintains a strong presence in the UK with a base in Stoke-on-Trent, and has garnered a stellar reputation in its three years of existence.

Costain, a prominent leader in innovative engineering solutions, has found a reliable and competent partner in Siemens. This collaboration ensures a powerful synergy that will undoubtedly propel the successful execution of the high-voltage power supply systems contract. Colas and Eiffage, two esteemed French companies, have joined forces to form an all-French team, leveraging their existing collaboration with Kier on another HS2 civils contract in the beautiful and picturesque Chilterns. Rounding out the list of distinguished shortlisted teams is UK Power Networks Services, a notable bidder who has demonstrated exceptional capabilities in this field.

Anticipation runs high as the industry eagerly awaits the much-anticipated announcement of the winning team for this extraordinary contract, valued at an impressive £523 million. The decision is slated to be revealed in the upcoming year, and it is expected to shape the future of HS2, as well as solidify the selected team's position as a key player in the successful delivery of this transformative high-speed rail project.

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