Seven international partnerships have submitted their applications within Rail Baltica Riga railway station, bridge and embankment design and build procurement

14. September, 2017

The implementing party of European gauge railway project Rail Baltica in Latvia – the company Eiropas Dzelzceļa līnijas has received applications for Stage One of the Rail Baltica Riga railway station, bridge and embankment design and build international public procurement. 7 international partnerships are willing to prove their experience according to tender regulations. Clearly, the leading Latvian construction companies and experts intend to prove their experience in the form of international cooperation – as partnerships.

The tender regulations of the international procurement provided for equal competition of all candidates. The procurement was open to foreign and local businesses, and allowed for local and international partnerships, who were free to choose their customised cooperation models and leading tenderer (partner). The procurement requirements set rather high-quality standards, and the candidates had to prove their experience meets these requirements.

Agnis Driksna, Head of the Development and Cooperation Department at Eiropas dzelzceļa līnijas: „We have a responsible and complicated work ahead of us – to assess the applications and to select candidates meeting the requirements of tender regulations, which will be invited to submit their bids for Stage Two. The largest Design&Build tender in Latvia imposing high qualification requirements took much time both to set the procurement requirements, and for the interested suppliers to come together and form partnerships of competencies, since the project brings railway skills together, such as construction of railway fly-overs, bridges, and roads. Until now, there was no need to bring such skills together in Latvia. We are now in the next step – assessment of applications, which shall shortlist candidates holding the respective competencies according to the pre-defined qualification requirements. Merging international competence with local experience is a good solution to accomplish the Rail Baltica Riga railway station, bridge and embankment design and build project (total costs close to 200 mio. EUR) in the next five years. Besides, inviting local companies will enable these with approved international experience in future. And Riga, as the capital of Latvia, will prove its capability to bring about a significant infrastructure project at a completely new quality. Project will enable more development opportunities for Riga City Centre.“

Kaspars Vingris, Head of Project Implementation Department at Eiropas Dzelzceļa līnijas: „Forming international partnerships is a logical step, because the implementation of such large-scale and complexity project is an unprecedented event in Latvia, and local companies were not able to accrue all relevant competencies. Our leading construction companies have appreciated the opportunities provided by participation in Rail Baltica project. This could be a win-win situation: international competence will bring the relevant quality, and provide further development opportunities for local companies. This proves, although the requirements of tender regulations were set at high level, these were reasonable.“

In total, 7 international partnerships submitted applications for the design and build of Rail Baltica Riga railway station, bridge and embankment. Besides local companies, the partnerships demonstrate international competence both from Lithuania and Poland, and Turkey, Spain, Belgium, and Italy.

List of submitted applications see here

The international procurement „Elaboration of the construction project and construction works of Rail Baltica's Riga Railway bridge, railway embankment and Riga Central Passenger Station premises“ is organised in two stages enabling savings of time and resources. Stage Two on the elaboration of construction plan and construction works along with work delivery propositions according to technical specifications shall be announced at the end of this year. The preferred tenderer will be awarded contract conclusion rights on the elaboration of construction plan and construction works, which shall be commenced in 2019.
The tender regulations allows for both Latvian and foreign businesses (candidates) to form partnerships merging relevant competencies and submitting an application; they are free to decide on their cooperation model and leading partner.
The tender requirements were set to accordingly high-quality standards, requiring candidates to prove their experience; they had to prove their average net turnover over the last three years had to amount to 100 mio. EUR, and the candidate's experts had to have experience in design from the last 5 years, and experience in delivery of construction works from the last 7 years.

As already reported earlier, the calculated project costs amounted to 186 million Euro, estimated within the feasibility study by AECOM. According to the sketch design contest results, the solution based on the sketch design by PLH Arkitekter and COWI (Denmark) was preferred since it was able to meet the budget requirements, offering sustainable technical solutions of due quality and efficient use of resources, and it provided justified scope of building and sequence of works. The authors of the sketch design have a rich experience in similar objects.

In general, integration of Rail Baltica within Riga multimodal transport hub will improve accessibility for disabled persons, safety, mobility, and transport availability. It will result in serving passengers travelling on both railway gauges. New street junction at Elizabetes and Timoteja Street will relieve traffic on nearby streets. A connection between the city centre and Pārdaugava will be established: a bridge with a new pedestrian and cycle path over River Daugava. Two parts of Riga will be linked: Old Town and Riga Central Market will be linked both visually and functionally.  The renovation of southern side of Riga Central Railway Station will result in quality public outdoors premises.

To prevent the harmonic development ideas from the sketch design contest for Riga urban environment from getting lost, the Ministry of Transport has proposed establishing a supra-institutional coordination council to support cooperation of the state, Riga City stakeholders and third parties.

The project is being implemented with the 85% co-funding of CEF (Connecting Europe Facility) and 15% national budged co-funding.

As already reported, Rail Baltica is a railway transport project, which aims to integrate the Baltic States within the European railway network, and at present it covers four countries: Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia. It is envisaged to build a new more than 870 km long European gauge (1435 mm) railway line with a maximum speed of 240 km/h contributing to mobility of inhabitants and cargo shipments on the North-South axis, and a sustainable and diversified development of national economies, along with the competitiveness to connect the metropolises Tallinn–Riga–Kaunas–Warsaw–Berlin by fast and eco-friendly railway transport traffic.