Race on for undersea Rogfast lots in Norway 10 Jan 2019

Patrick Reynolds for TunnelTalk
First major contract is the Kvitsøy interchange
First major contract is the Kvitsøy interchange

Five groups are seeking prequalification for bidding the first Lot E02 contract for the Rogfast subsea road tunnel project in Norway. The contract involves a total of 21km of intricate excavation for access tunnels and portions of twin undersea roadway tunnels of below the island of Kvitsøy in Bokna fjord, in the middle of the 26.7km long Rogfast project (Fig 1).

The five groups seeking to be shortlisted to bid the Kvitsøy package are:

  • Implenia/Stangeland
  • Marti Tunnel
  • PNC Norge
  • Salini Impregilo
  • Skanska Norge

NPRA, the Norwegian roads authority, is reviewing the applications and aims to produce a shortlist in the near future, project spokesman Øyvind Ellingsen told TunnelTalk. “The shortlist could have up to four potential bidders”, he said, updating the number from the previous plan for a maximum of three groups allowed for Lot E02.

Deadline for submissions from the shortlisted groups for Lot E02 has yet to be set but is expected to be in the first quarter of 2019, Ellingsen added.

Progress on Arsvågen lot at north end of Rogfast
Progress on Arsvågen lot at north end of Rogfast

Procurement on the lot is through the price and negotiation concept (kontrakt ved forhandling in Norwegian), which allows initial offers from contractors to be refined through discussions over the following months, the client then making a judgment on final financial offers with other qualities. Ellingsen confirmed the project schedule anticipates award of the Kvitsøy Island lot by Spring 2019 with excavations to be underway by mid-year.

NPRA plans to get procurement underway for the first of the last two undersea lots for the project also by mid-year. The procurement process for the Harestad Lot E03 contract will start in the 2019 second quarter and for the Laupland Lot E04 possibly little more than three months later. The packages have twin roadway tunnels that will extend from the opposite mainland portals toward Kvitsøy Island in the middle of the subsea fixed link.

In the meantime, early excavations on the project are almost complete. Drill+blast for the design-build contract of the 700m long Mekjarvik single tube transportation tunnel was completed in October 2018 after contractor Betonmasthaehre started works in June. and blasting on the design-build Arsvågen Lot started almost a year ago and contractor NCC is nearing completion of the twin 1.9km long tunnels that form a branch to Arsvågen off the main tunnel axis to Laupland.

Ryfast Eiganes tunnels near completion
Ryfast Eiganes tunnels near completion

During 2019, NPRA expects to complete two other big road tunnel projects it has had under construction in the Stavanger region. Excavation of the Eiganes E39 urban tunnel by Implenia/Stangeland and on two lots for the Ryfylke subsea tunnel by Marti/IAV and AF Gruppen is complete and fit-out is well advanced on both projects, said Ellingsen. The Hundvåg link tunnel being built by Kruse Smith/Risa links the two projects together with the pairing of the Ryfylke and Hundvåg tunnels forming the Ryfast subsea fjord-crossing project.

Following the opening of the Ryfast and Eiganes road tunnels by early 2020, the focus of underground work in the Norwegian tunnelling hot spot around Stavanger will move to the Rogfast road tunnel which is a key part of Norway’s E39 West Coast Highway and is planned to open in late 2026.

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