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Balfour Beatty secures contract for Hertfordshire BSF sample schools

Balfour Beatty has won the £80 million deal to build the sample schools for the Hertfordshire Building Schools for the Future programme. The contractor beat Sir Robert McAlpine to the contract after both were shortlisted for the wider £1 billion scheme.

The scheme was scrapped by the government in July, but work on three sample schools in Stevenage was approved earlier this month. Balfour will rebuild and remodel Marriotts, Lonsdale and Nobel schools in Stevenage.

Financial close is expected by the end of this year and work is due to start early in 2011.

Hertfordshire County Council’s executive member for education Richard Thake said: “Now that we have chosen the company we wish to take forward these projects, work can progress on drawing up the necessary contracts with a view to building work starting at the Marriotts site in February 2011.”

Marriotts, a community secondary school, will be expanded on its current site and co-located with special school Lonsdale.

The Nobel scheme involves the partial remodelling of existing buildings as well as substantial new building work.

The Hertfordshire win means Balfour Beatty will work on at least 12 of the 33 rescued BSF sample schools. It is preferred bidder for the Derby City, Ealing, Hartlepool and Oldham schemes.

Balfour Beatty was also shortlisted against Kier for the Bournemouth BSF scheme but it is not certain one of these firms will build the sample school. A source at the Dorset council told H&V News last month: “We hope we can continue with the two bidders we have but we have to look at all the options - we don’t want to fall foul of any procurement laws.”

Halton Borough Council, the other authority with sample schools to award, is awaiting news of whether it can continue with its existing procurement process for two salvaged projects.


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