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Bilfinger wins reprieved hospital project

CONTRACTS: GLOUCESTER

GERMAN contractor Bilfinger + Berger has seen off competition from Jarvis and Skanska for a £35 million Private Finance Initiative hospital contract in Gloucester.

The firm was told last week it had won the deal to revamp the Gloucestershire Royal Hospital for the Gloucestershire Royal NHS Trust. Work will start on the Great Western Road site early next year with the hospital opening in early 2004.

Another German firm, M + W Zander, will take over facilities management of the hospital during the 30-year concession.

Bids from Bovis Lend Lease, HBG and Shepherd were dropped just before Christmas.

The scheme was initially advertised as a £70 million deal but was put on ice in 1997 as the incoming Labour government began its review of PFI health projects. At that time the United Healthcare consortium, featuring Taylor Woodrow, was preferred bidder.

Since then the project has been scaled back. Bilfinger + Berger will be required to redevelop parts of the hospital and build a block at the western end of the site, which will include a new accident and emergency department.