The public gets what the public wants

London Underground has signed a Share Purchase Agreement aimed at transferring the renewal, modernisation and maintenance of London Underground’s infrastructure to the private sector.

London Underground has signed a Share Purchase Agreement aimed at transferring the renewal, modernisation and maintenance of London Underground’s infrastructure to the private sector for the next 30 years.

The agreement will become effective when ‘Financial Close’ is finalised, which is expected later this year.

Contracts have been signed between London Underground and two consortia – Metronet and Tube Lines Group – who will be responsible for delivering improvements under a Private Partnership Program.

Over the next few weeks, clearance will be obtained from the competition authorities and private finance will be raised.

Metronet plans to spend nearly £7 billion pounds in the first seven and a half years of the contract on its two infrastructure companies, incorporating the Bakerloo, Central, Victoria and Waterloo & City lines (BCV) and the Sub Surface lines – Metropolitan, District, Circle, Hammersmith & City and East London lines (SSL). The companies will be known as Metronet Rail BCV Limited and Metronet Rail SSL Limited.

Following the signing of the Share Purchase Agreement, Metronet will award Bombardier the contract for supplying new trains and signalling, Balfour Beatty the track work and Trans4m, made up of Balfour Beatty, Thames Water, Atkins and Seeboard, the civil engineering work and the refurbishment and modernisation of the stations.

Tube Lines, London Underground’s preferred partner for the regeneration of the Jubilee, Northern and Piccadilly lines, is a consortium backed by Bechtel, Amey, and Jarvis.

The company intends to introduce a priority track replacement programme to improve ride quality and remove speed restrictions, renewing 103 km of track within the first seven and a half years. In addition, it plans to replace 96 escalators, refurbish 49 lifts, modernise and refurbish 97% stations and improve cleaning of trains and stations.