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  • Writer's pictureSafer Highways

Four major NMCN contracts facing uncertainty after firm’s collapse

The collapse of utility-specialist NMCN leaves a number of major projects in the lurch.

NMCN confirmed that it had filed notice of its intention to appoint Grant Thornton as administrator for the parent company NMCN and NMCN Sustainable Solutions subsidiary.

NMCN has won several major contracts over the past few years, from water to roads, and the impact of the firm's collapse on these projects remains to be seen.

Here are four key NMCN schemes awaiting clarity.

Liverpool Lime Street redevelopment

NMCN is the principal contractor on the redevelopment of the Lime Street and St George's area in Liverpool.

The scheme is part of the wider City Centre Connectivity Scheme, which is already running significantly over budget and the subject of political disagreement.

The Liverpool Echo said it understands that NMCN's collapse could add months on to the Lime Street work programme.

Work had entered its final phase and was due to complete by mid December.

A Liverpool City Council spokesperson said: "Officers have been tasked with securing Lime Street and making it safe, whilst we await formal confirmation. The council will be seeking clarification on the matter to inform our next steps.”

Bellozanne Treatment Works in Jersey

The Jersey government awarded NMCN a £55M design and build contract to develop a new sewage treatment works at Bellozanne, St Helier.

NMCN was working alongside process engineer Doosan Enpure and Jersey-based civil engineering contractor Geomarine.

The project aims to improve efficiency and performance of the facility, which has been in operation for nearly 60 years.

Completion is expected in December 2022, and in September 2020 the government said the project was on track to meet this target.

A government spokesperson said: ‘The new sewage treatment works is due to be completed by the end of 2022, as planned, despite a delay of approximately 12 weeks due to weather and the impact of the coronavirus pandemic."

It is unclear what the collapse of NMCN will mean for the final months of the scheme.

South West Water H50 Alliance.

Back in 2018, NMCN was appointed as main construction delivery partner on the £225M South West Water H50 Alliance over AMP7 (2020-25).

Stantec is working on design and ChandlerKBS acting as a cost consultant.

NMCN stood to earn £25M-£45M a year for its work over the control period while Stantec could recoup fees over £50M during the same period.

A second contractor was originally part of the tender, however it was put on pause. The new H50 Alliance partners replaced Balfour Beatty and Interserve who continued until the end of AMP6.

A South West Water spokesperson said: “We are aware that the board of NMCN has confirmed that it has filed notice of its intention to appoint administrators for NMCN plc and NMCN Sustainable Solutions and we are putting in place measures to minimise any disruption to our programmes of work as a result of this situation.”

National Highways Regional Delivery Partnership

Thirteen contractors won places on the framework, with NMCN placed on lot 3 for the North West, North East, Yorkshire & Humber (worth £200M).

Amey Sir Robert McAlpine Joint Venture also won a place on lot 3.

The new framework is a cornerstone of National Highways' relationship with the supply chain for the second UK Road Investment Strategy (RIS2) until 2024.

Bam Nuttall, Skanska and Galliford Try were all named on two of the eight lots. Other winning contractors included Balfour Beatty, Taylor Woodrow, Kier, Volker Fitzpatrick, Amey and Costain.

Under the framework, the regional delivery integration partners deliver schemes such as conventional road widening and junction improvements.

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