Millions paid for consultants as Edinburgh's £207m tram extension construction set to start within weeks

CONTRACTS worth millions of pounds for consultants to help build the tram extension are due to be approved by councillors this week.

Monday, 7th October 2019, 6:00 am
Updated Monday, 7th October 2019, 7:39 am
Project managers for the construction of the tram extension will be Turner & Townsend, the firm brought in to help the council complete the original tram project.

Following completion of an initial phase of the £207 million project, the construction phase to take the tram line down Leith Walk and on to Newhaven is due to start in November.

And a report to the council’s finance and resources committee on Thursday recommends appointing three firms of consultants which have already been involved in the early stages of the work.

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Edinburgh Trams: Councillors approve controversial £207m tram extension to Newhaven
Following completion of an initial phase this month, construction of the tram line from York Place down Leith Walk to Newhaven is due to start in November.

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Atkins Ltd will be handed a £1,195,000 contract for engineering support and design development.

And Anturas Ltd will provide a project director and support communications management under a £776,337 contract.

Turner and Townsend were brought in to help the council complete the troubled original tram project after it decided effectively to remove its own arms-length tram company TIE.

The total cost of the three contracts is £8,770,337, which is already allowed for within the Edinburgh Tram York Place to Newhaven Project budget.

The council will also agree on Thursday a sum of £2,656,348 for Scottish Water to review and sign off the design of diversionary routes for water pipes in the way of the trams.

Finance convener Alasdair Rankin said: “Taking trams to Newhaven through one of the most densely populated urban areas in Scotland is a highly complex project which requires dedicated, specialist knowledge and expertise.

“One of the key lessons learned from the previous tram project was the value of employing highly qualified experts with a proven track record in delivering successful major transport and infrastructure projects.

“The team from Turner & Townsend, for example, was instrumental in delivering passenger services from the airport to York Place and their work in preparing the final business case and on the project to date has been invaluable.”