Contractors bidding for HS2’s £1.3bn Old Oak Common contract were informed of Fluor’s entry into the race just a day before a crucial tender deadline.
CN understands HS2 formally told bidders of its decision to allow Fluor into the Bam / Ferrovial consortium on 29 March, despite tenders being due for Old Oak Common on 30 March.
The move left rival firms with only 24 hours to factor in any changes to their submissions in the light of Fluor’s inclusion.
CN understands the 30 March cut-off for Old Oak is the first ITT deadline set by HS2, with bidders’ submissions being assessed on technical capability.
A second tender submission assessing the commercial side of the Old Oak bids is due in the coming weeks.
US engineering giant Fluor joined the Bam / Ferrovial team bidding for both the Old Oak contract and the £1.65bn Euston station redevelopment deal.
CN had reported last month that Bam and Ferrovial were in discussions with Fluor over joining the consortium.
The $20bn firm brings experience of delivering high-speed rail projects worldwide and stations schemes in the US.
HS2 station procurement rules have always stated that bidders would be able to add companies to their teams but must inform the client of the changes immediately.
Any firm added must pass HS2’s assessment stages, which include categories looking at compliance and eligibility and minimum standards in conflict of interest, health and safety and financial standing.
The assessments also includes a section looking at the technical and professional ability of companies.
HS2 launched the bidding for the £3bn London stations contracts last July, with the client revealing the shortlist of contractors in early February.
In late February Laing O’Rourke / Canary Wharf / MTR JV pulled out the race for Euston following HS2’s decision to award the Euston master-developer role to Lendlease.
Bechtel also decided to pull out of the Euston race to focus on Old Oak, and added Morgan Sindall to its team.
A HS2 spokesman said: “There is a standard provision for change of circumstances within the pre-qualification and ITT documentation. All of the bidders have been notified of the new party.”