CIMIC wins both main Cross River Rail contracts

03 April 2019 - 12:00 am UTC

CIMIC’s Pulse consortium has been awarded the tunnels and stations PPP contract in Brisbane’s AUD 5.4bn (USD 3.85bn) Cross River Rail project.

Its subsidiaries CPB Contractors and UGL are also part of the Unity consortium that has been awarded the Rail, Integration and Systems (RIS) alliance contract on the 10.2km line to be built under Brisbane’s centre. 

Hitachi Rail STS was awarded the contract to supply a new European Train Control System for the project.

The Queensland government announced the decisions on Thursday (4 April) following a 20-month procurement process.

Industry observers early on earmarked CIMIC as the favourite as construction contractors, Acciona and Lendlease, on the other two shortlisted teams led by Plenary and Lendlease’s Capella Capital were dealing with large losses on other projects, including Sydney Light Rail for Acciona and several deals for Lendlease which is selling its engineering and services division.

A similar situation favoured the Unity consortium when it was revealed Laing O’Rourke – part of the River City Alliance that was up against the Unity consortium for the alliance contract – had had its building licence suspended by the state Building and Construction Commission. This was restored on 13 March.

The banks backing the Pulse consortium include BBVA, Credit Agricole, HSBC, Intesa, KfW,  MUFG Bank, Norinchukin, Societe Generale, SMBC and Standard Chartered, according to sources familiar. Macquarie Capital is lending adviser to the consortium and Allens is a legal adviser.

The value of the PPP contract has yet to be disclosed. A spokesperson for CIMIC said it would be available at financial close due in the “coming months”.

The government said the Cross River Rail Delivery Authority would “work through to mid-2019” with the winners of the three works packages to achieve contract finalisation, the delivery schedule, and contractor mobilisation.

The contractors are expected to be on site by late in the year, with trains expected be running on the line by 2024.

The Pulse consortium comprises: CIMIC’s CPB Contractors, Pacific Partnerships and UGL, DIF Infrastructure V, Grupo Ghella and Royal BAM Group. Pacific Partnerships, the investment arm of CIMIC, will put 49% of the equity into the project. The other consortium members listed above will contribute the remaining 51%. 

The Unity consortium that won the RIS alliance contract includes CPB Contractors, UGL Engineering, Jacobs Group and AECOM. 


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