Supply chain partner for the evaluation of new rail franchises, the biggest transformation of rail journeys in the North of England for decades

The award of two new passenger rail franchises by the UK Department for Transport (DfT) represented the biggest transformation of rail journeys in the north of England for decades.

Direx Solutions was selected to provide commercial and technical advisory services for the Northern and TransPennine Express (TPE) Rail Franchises competition process. As supply chain partner to a joint venture of CH2M (now part of Jacobs) and the UK’s Transport Research Laboratory (TRL), we provided support during the specification, OJEU (Official Journal of the European Union), prospectus, pre-qualification and ITT (Invitation to Tender) phases. This was followed by bid evaluation, risk adjustment and negotiation of direct awards for both franchises.

Following separate, rigorous competitions, the nine-year Northern franchise was awarded to Arriva, and the seven-year TransPennine Express (TPE) franchise to First. The franchises will see significant investment in new rolling stock, improved train services and additional capacity.