India’s National High Speed Rail Corporation Ltd. (NHSRCL) on Friday re-invited bids, for the third time, to construct 20.377 km Package C-2 of the 508.17 km Mumbai – Ahmedabad High Speed Rail (MAHSR Bullet Train) project.
Package C2 of the main-line between chainage Km 0.773 (Bandra Kurla Complex Station) and Km 21.150 (Shilphata) will be entirely underground and consist of roughly 3 km “undersea” twin tunnels below Thane Creek. The appointed contractor will be required to use at least 3 Mega TBMs with a diameter of roughly 14.5 meters.
NHSRCL had originally invited bids for this package in 2019 with a clause requiring a Japanese contractor to be the prime / lead partner in case of a joint-venture. That round received zero bids.
The second tender was launched November 2021 and canceled in February 2022 due to land acquisition issues for TBM launch shafts and uncertainty Bandra Kurla Complex Station’s land where a pop-up COVID hospital was built in 2020.
IFB Number: Package No. MAHSR-C-2
Brief Scope: Construction of Tunnelling Works including Testing and Commissioning for Double Line High Speed Railway using (TBM) and (NATM) between Mumbai Underground Station at Bandra-Kurla Complex (MAHSR Km. 0.773) and Shilphata (MAHSR Km. 21.150).
- Completion Period: 1888 days (5.17 years)
- Pre-bid Meeting: 21-Oct-2022 at 11:00 AM
- Date & Time of Submission of Tender: 19-Jan-2023 at 3:00 PM
- Date & Time of Opening of Tender: 20-Jan-2023 at 3:00 PM
If things go according to the scheduled bidding timeline, then I see financial bids getting opened in Q2 2023 with preliminary construction work starting by the end of 2023 and tunneling work in 2025.
With this development, just 1 more tender notice is pending for 135.45 km Package C3 (Shilphata – Zaroli) in Maharashtra. Land acquisition progress in Maharashtra now stands at an encouraging 96% from a total requirement of roughly 1070 acres. Out of this NHSRCL has 71% in its possession, so a tender notice should be around the corner.
A list of all bullet train civil and system packages and their status can be viewed here.
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