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Contractors vie for Manchester Victoria project

Contractors vie for Manchester Victoria project
Plans to upgrade Manchester's Victoria station are ongoing as the two remaining contractors compete to land the £20 million contract for construction.

Both Morgan Sindall and Kier have submitted bids to Network Rail which will make the final decision once reviewing both the company's plans.

The main part of the proposals is to install an ETFE (ethylene tetrafluoroethylene) roof over the aging station and move it into the 21st century, Construction Enquirer reports.

As well as putting up the new roof the winning bidder will also carry out major regeneration work on the station's concourse and will also the conduct immediate electrification of the line to Liverpool as part of the city's Northern Hub plans, which are due to be completed in 2014.

Victoria station, which is a Grade II listed building and Manchester's second biggest station behind Piccadilly, is mainly used for local train services as well as the city's Metrolink tram service.

An insider source told the source: "The word is Morgan Sindall may have a slightly cheaper bid but Kier has put in a very detailed bid and can't be ruled out.”

In 2009, Victoria was named as the worst station in the UK in a government report, beating the overcrowded Clapham Junction and Crewe stations to take the prize. In a damning statement by transport secretary Lord Adonis, Victoria received the lowest customer satisfaction rating and has prompted these plans to be put in place to help improve Victoria's crumbling reputation.

Lord Adonis wrote in his blog at the time: "While touring the rail network in April this year, I was struck by the great variation in the passenger facilities at stations. Train travel has improved a good deal in recent years, but more needs to be done to improve conditions and services for passengers at stations."

The proposals to renovate the aging station go hand-in-hand with Transport for Greater Manchester's plans of upgrading and expanding the city's Metrolink service to reach destinations such as Oldham, Rochdale, Ashton-under-Lyne and Drolysden. The former is due to be ready during 2012 while an extension to Manchester Airport is proposed to be completed by 2016.

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Date: 10/05/2012 14:52:31

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