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Nuttall gets on board £86m guided bus deal

NEWS

NUTTALL has been appointed preferred bidder on an £86 million deal to build a guided bus transport system in Cambridgeshire.

The project, which will see buses run on a disused railway line through Cambridge, has been dogged by delays since it was first proposed by the County Council more than two years ago.

A council spokeswoman said: 'Once we have the funding secured from the Department for Transport we can officially award the contract.'

Nuttall fought off competition from rival firms Birse and Balfour Beatty to secure the job.

The original list also featured May Gurney, Carillion and Kier but uncertainty over the project's future led to firms pulling out.

The scheme will see buses travel on a guideway from St Ives, north of the city, into Cambridge itself.

The buses will continue to Addenbrooke's Hospital and a park-and-ride pick-up point.

More than 25 km of track will be built along the St Ives and Bedford railway lines, making the guideway the longest in Europe.

Council leaders rubberstamped planning approval last Friday.

Construction work is due to start this autumn, with completion planned for 2008.