LU invites Thales to tender for new signalling system
- Increase in capacity on the Circle and Hammersmith & City lines of 65 per cent, the District line of 24 per cent and the Metropolitan line of 27 per cent
- Improvements remain on course to be delivered in 2018
London Underground (LU) today confirmed that, following a detailed pre-qualification process, Thales will be invited to tender for the contract to transform capacity and reliability on the Circle, District, Hammersmith & City and Metropolitan lines (Sub-Surface railway).
The delivery of the contract would see the signalling replaced and modernised - improving the journeys of millions of people who use the lines, which comprise 40 per cent of the Underground network, each day.
LU issued an OJEU at the beginning of this year asking for expressions of interest from the industry for a signalling system that can be implemented on to the Sub-Surface Railway.
Thales, who have been installing the signalling on the Northern line, presented LU with a signalling solution that would meet the intricate operational requirements of the oldest and most complex parts of the Tube network.
The next stage of the process is to work together with Thales to secure a firm commitment with a competitive cost, delivering value for money, and with a realistic and reliable commissioning programme.
New signalling will allow more trains to be run more frequently and more reliably.
Combined with the 191 walk-through air conditioned S-Stock trains that now serve the Metropolitan, Circle and Hammersmith & City lines and are being introduced on the District line too.
This project will increase capacity on the Circle and Hammersmith & City lines by 65 per cent, the District line by 24 per cent and the Metropolitan line by 27 per cent.
This will ease crowding and allow the network to cope with rapidly rising demand.
This process follows a mutually agreed decision between LU and Bombardier in December 2013 to re-let the contract that Bombardier had been awarded in 2011.
It is anticipated that a new contract will be awarded this summer.
Mike Brown MVO, Managing Director of London Underground said: "This is an important step in ensuring that the delivery of this vital upgrade remains on course.The signalling system on these lines is some of the oldest in use anywhere in the world, with some of it dating back to the 1930s. The modernisation work will mean more frequent, more reliable and less crowded journeys for our customers and will help us meet rapidly growing customer demand. At the same time, it is vital that modernisation is delivered cost effectively for our passengers and taxpayers. We will only enter in to a contract if I am absolutely certain that Londoners are getting value for money and if I have absolute confidence in the delivery schedule."
The pre-qualification process was designed to identify suppliers with a technical solution that:
- Requires minimal (less than 10 per cent change) development to meet the performance requirements and operational and infrastructure complexity requirements for the SSR
- Has acquired safety cases for the systems, on London Underground or a very similar complex, high capacity metro
- Is capable of achieving delivery by the 2018 deadline or as soon as practicable thereafter
- Requires minimal integration between subsystems
- Achieves world class levels of reliability
- Can be achieved with a very limited number of weekend closures