Arcadis-WSP JV to design civils for Melbourne highway upgrade

WSP in joint venture with Arcadis has been appointed as a designer to the Spark consortium, which will build, operate and maintain the tunnels for the North East Link highway project in Melbourne, Australia.

The Victorian Government awarded the Spark consortium the A$11.1bn (£6.1bn) public private partnership (PPP) contract for the road project’s tunnelling package last October.

The project will upgrade the city’s highway system with 6.5km of three-lane twin tunnels.

WSP and Arcadis will deliver the work for Spark’s Construction Joint Venture (CJV), which includes Webuild, GS Engineering and Construction, CPB Contractors and China Construction Oceania.

The Arcadis WSP JV’s scope of work includes design and engineering, specifically for civil structures, bridges, viaducts, cut and cover tunnels, noise walls and flood walls.

It will also provide building structures engineering, acoustics, durability, fire and life safety and ventilation services, as well as technical support for environmental and planning.

The JV will deliver these design services over the next two years. It will then provide construction support services until the end of 2026.

WSP director of transport Charlie Jewkes said: “WSP is delighted to be playing a part in delivering the missing link in Melbourne’s freeway network, and ultimately helping alleviate congestion on local roads.

“The award of this contract is the culmination of more than four years of work in supporting the bids of our key clients. This win is testament to our long-standing relationships and prior collaborations.”

In June last year the Victorian Government identified the Webuild-led consortium as the preferred bidder for the tunnelling package.

The North East Link road project – the state of Victoria’s largest to date – is expected to take 15,000 trucks off local roads a day and slash travel times by up to 35 minutes.

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