HS2 has awarded PORR UK Ltd and Aggregate Industries UK a contract to design and manufacture the modular track system for the UK’s new high-speed railway
The deal – worth £260m – will see the PORR consortium manufacture all of the track (excluding tunnels and some specialist structures) between London and Crewe, where HS2 joins the existing west coast mainline.
The deal will see the slab track segments manufactured at a new factory near Shepton Mallet in Somerset helping to create up to 500 jobs over the life of the contract.
The Slab Track Austria
Using a modular construction system known as Slab Track Austria, the concrete slab track will be manufactured offsite at a new purpose-built factory in Somerset before being transported to site. Once installed, the rails are then fitted onto the slab track.
This type of system – which is used on several high-speed railways across the world will reduce maintenance costs and improve performance in comparison to traditional ballasted track.
Simon Jukes, managing director of PORR UK Ltd, said: “The PORR Consortium is delighted to have the opportunity to contribute to this major contract and will bring a wealth of technical expertise and experience in high-speed rail and slab track to the HS2 project.
“We are looking forward to working collaboratively with the HS2 team to deliver a world-class sustainable rail infrastructure for the United Kingdom.”
HS2 Ltd’s procurement and commercial director, David Poole, said: “HS2 is designed to provide reliable high frequency, high capacity rail services for millions of people across the UK.
“Slab track will provide long-term value for money with lower maintenance costs and greater reliability and that’s why I’m pleased that today we are awarding that contract to the PORR consortium.