Contractor needed for HS2 Automated People Mover (APM)

Artist's impression of the HS2 APM crossing Pendigo Lake

HS2 Ltd has started the search for a contractor to lead the enabling works programme for the new Automated People Mover (APM) at Interchange Station in Solihull. 

This is the first package of work to be procured for the elevated mass transit system, which will transport thousands of passengers, every hour, between Interchange Station, the National Exhibition Centre (NEC), Birmingham International Railway Station, and Birmingham Airport. 

The contract, worth up to £2m, is being procured through the government’s Crown Commercial Services Framework, which enables registered suppliers to bid for the work. 

The APM enabling works programme includes topographical surveys, ground investigations and utility surveys.  

It is expected to take around 12 months to complete the works, paving the way for construction of the APM’s main infrastructure components, which include four stops, a 2.2km long viaduct, and a maintenance facility. 

Ailsa Waygood, HS2’s project client for Interchange Station and the APM said: “The APM is vital for both Interchange Station and the surrounding area. 

"It will connect millions of people to new opportunities to live, work and play in Solihull. 

“Arden Cross plan to bring new homes, learning hubs and businesses to the area around the station, and both the NEC and Airport are turbocharging their growth plans in readiness for its arrival."

She added: "This is a hugely exciting time for the West Midlands region, and we look forward to onboarding our first contractor to help turn this vision into reality.” 

Sean Butler, HS2’s senior project manager the APM said: “Launching the procurement for the APM enabling works is the result of several years of collaboration and engagement across HS2, DfT and stakeholders in the region. 

“This is the first step in the journey to deliver the APM in time for HS2 services arriving at Interchange station.” 

The successful bidder for the enabling works contract will deliver a unique programme of work that spans the entire 2.2km route the APM will follow, crossing the M42, West Coast Mainline, Birmingham Airport and Pendigo Lake. 

Findings from the ground investigation works, topographical and bathymetric surveys will help to inform the existing design for the APM and future works packages.  

The new year, 2024, is shaping up to be a big year in preparation for the APM’s arrival. 

HS2 expects to award the enabling works contract early next year, with works to commence in the spring.  

Two further procurement opportunities will also begin next year, as HS2 invites suppliers to tender for the contract to design and supply a transport system and the 25-year transport operation and maintenance contract. 

Market engagement will also continue throughout 2024 as HS2 steps up its search for a supplier to deliver the APM’s infrastructure components. 

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