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Metro Tunnel

Project delivery

The Metro Tunnel is a major enhancement to Melbourne's rail network and will need to integrate with the existing system. A procurement and delivery strategy has been developed to respond to the unique challenges this poses.

The Melbourne Metro Rail Authority (MMRA) is the Victorian Government body responsible for delivery of the Metro Tunnel.

MMRA is responsible for all aspects of the projects including planning and development of a project reference design, site investigations, stakeholder engagement, planning approvals and procurement, through to construction delivery and project commissioning.

The proposed construction delivery strategy was validated with the market as part of a market sounding process. We have invited tenders and service providers to express interest in delivering the following scope elements of the Metro Tunnel Project.

Works packageProcurement modelProcurement status
Early Works
Utility service relocation and works to prepare construction sites
Managing ContractorContract awarded to John Holland.
Tunnel and Stations
Main tunnelling works, five underground stations, station fit-out, mechanical and electrical systems and specific maintenance services for the infrastructure delivered by the package and commercial opportunities at the new stations.
Availability based Public Private PartnershipContract awarded to Cross Yarra Partnership (CYP) consortium, comprising Lendlease Engineering, John Holland, Bouygues Construction and Capella Capital.
Rail Infrastructure
Works at the eastern and western portals including cut and cover tunnelling, decline structures, turnbacks and local reconfiguration and realignment of existing lines.
Competitive allianceShortlist announced.

Construction power

Utility Service Provider worksContract awarded to Beon Energy Solutions.
Rail Systems
Rail systems design (including conventional signalling, high capacity signalling, train and power control systems and operational control systems), installation works, rail systems integration and commissioning.
Competitive allianceContract awarded to CPB Contractors and Bombardier Transportation.

Tram infrastructure works

Franchise Works (Yarra Trams)To be delivered by Yarra Trams.
Wider Network Enhancements
Proposed to include works which are required across the wider network including track modifications, station upgrades and signalling system upgrades.
Case by caseMarket engagement to be developed case by case.

Early Works

Service relocations and construction preparation

An initial program of works including protection and relocation of utility services such as gas, sewer and water mains, demolition and road, bicycle and footpath changes will be delivered under the Early Works Managing Contractor contract.

A Managing Contractor procurement model involves the client engaging a supplier (the Managing Contractor – John Holland) through a competitive tendering process to manage the development of design, construction documentation and manage construction works on its behalf.

Tram infrastructure works

Works on tram infrastructure will be undertaken by Yarra Trams (under the existing Tram Franchise Agreement). This includes:

Construction power

The supply of construction power was procured through the relevant utility service providers in early 2017 and will be delivered by Beon Energy Solutions. These works include:

  • construction of two temporary power substations – one in rail land in Arden and one at Edmund Herring Oval in Domain – to provide power to the tunnel boring machines that will build the new rail tunnels.

Tunnel and Stations

A multi-billion dollar availability based Public Private Partnership (PPP) includes the design and construction of the twin nine-kilometre tunnels and five underground stations, private finance and the provision of maintenance and other services during the operating term.

PPP works will be undertaken by the Cross Yarra Partnership (CYP) consortium. CYP comprises Lendlease Engineering, John Holland, Bouygues Construction and Capella Capital.

A PPP model drives innovation, best practice and value for money on the project. In an 'availability PPP' the State Government provides regular payments to the private party for making the asset 'available' for use. For this package, that will mean making the tunnel and stations available for public transport operations and Victorians to use.


The Rail Systems and Rail Infrastructure packages will be procured through separate competitive alliance processes in which direct price competition will be assessed along with non-priced criteria. The membership of both alliances will generally be comprised of the State, rail operators and constructors and will work as an integrated, collaborative team to deal with key project delivery matters in good faith, act with integrity and make best-for-project decisions.

Rail Systems

The Rail Systems Alliance (RSA) will include the design, supply, installation, testing, integration and commissioning activities in relation to train and power control systems, operational control systems, conventional and high capacity signalling.

Rail Systems works will be undertaken by a consortium comprising CPB Contractors and Bombardier Transportation.

Rail Infrastructure

The Rail Infrastructure Alliance (RIA) will include works at the eastern and western tunnel entrances and exits (portals) including cut and cover tunnelling, decline structures and the reconfiguration and realignment of existing lines to connect the new Metro Tunnel rail tracks to the existing surface network. RIA will also deliver associated tunnel, track and signalling works along the Sunbury and Dandenong lines to support the reconfiguration of the rail network to support day one operations of the Metro Tunnel.

The shortlisted bidders for this alliance were announced on 6 December 2017:

  • CPB John Holland AECOM, comprising CPB Contractors, John Holland, and AECOM Australia
  • Laing O’Rourke, comprising Laing O’Rourke, Kellogg Brown & Root and WSP Australia.