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London and Sydney award rail concessions 16 Sep 2014

TunnelTalk reporting

MTR Corp of Hong Kong signs separate concession agreements to operate train services for two of the world's largest new underground rail systems in Australia and the UK.

Crossrail underground alignment in London
Crossrail underground alignment in London

An eight-year concession with an option for a further two-year extension is awarded by Transport for London (TfL) to operate the new Crossrail train services in London.

MTR will start running trains on a section of 15 stations between Liverpool Street Station and Shenfield from 31 May 2015. Additional services to complete the whole 118km Crossrail route between Maidenhead in the west and Shenfield and Abbey Wood to the east of London, will be phased in up to 2019. At peak operation approximately 700 timetabled trains will be operating on the new line each day. TBM excavation is nearing completion on the 21km of twin running Crossrail tunnels through central London.

"MTR has a strong management team in place in London to lead Crossrail operations and we are already well advanced in our planning and preparations for a successful launch to train services next year. Over the next few months, we will be recruiting hundreds of employees and working closely with TfL and other partners to ensure that a high standard of service is set right from day one of railway operations," said Jeremy Long, CEO European Business, MTR Corp.

North West Rail link, Sydney, Australia
North West Rail link, Sydney, Australia

In Sydney, Australia, MTR Corp, as part of the Northwest Rapid Transit Consortium (NTR), is awarded a share in the concession to procure the rolling stock for, as well as the design, construction and financing of the North West Rail Link. It will also operate and maintain the new 36km long Rouse Hill-Chatswood line for a period of 15 years. The Operations, Trains and Systems PPP concession - the largest single contract on the project - will be shared between MTR Corp, John Holland, Leighton, UGL Rail and Plenary Group, in a deal worth Aust$3.7 billion.

Construction of the North West Rail Link - 15km of which is in twin running tunnels - is already under way, with the first TBM launched last week (8 September) by the Thiess/John Holland/Dragados JV as part of its separate Aust$1.15 billion underground construction contract.

"This is a very exciting project for MTR and our consortium partners. Together, we are absolutely committed to delivering a world class new railway system for Sydney and demonstrating how our international expertise can contribute to the future growth of this great global city," said Lincoln Leong, Acting Chief Executive Officer of MTR Corp.

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