NETWORK RAIL AWARDS CONTRACT FOR MK NATIONAL CENTRE: Network Rail national centre - main entrance

Monday 7 Dec 2009


Region & Route:
| North West & Central

Network Rail’s plans for a national centre in Milton Keynes – which would house up to 3,000 employees and bring new jobs to the area – took another step forward today with the award of a key contract.

Network Rail’s proposals would make the new centre one of the most sustainable office buildings in the country, incorporating a range of innovative features to limit energy consumption and its impact on the environment.

Today, Network Rail announced the award of a pre-construction services agreement to BAM Construction to assist in the second stage of the design and build procurement process before construction begins – subject to planning permission – in the summer next year.

The proposed building, scheduled to open in 2012, will be located near Milton Keynes Central railway station on the site of the former National Hockey Stadium.

Iain Coucher, chief executive for Network Rail said: “Our announcement today marks another milestone in our plans to bring the national centre to Milton Keynes, uniting some of our key national functions together under one eco-friendly roof.

“As one of the most sustainable methods of travel, rail has a big role to play in the low carbon economy of the future and our plans for the national centre demonstrate our commitment to reduce our environmental impact at every turn. We recognise the importance of urban planning to the history of Milton Keynes and the way the city has been designed. We want our building to be one of which both the city and Network Rail can be proud.”

Nigel Comben, south east regional director, BAM said: “BAM is delighted to be awarded the pre-construction services for this exciting project and will bring to it the experienced team that recently completed an award winning £72m mixed use scheme adjacent to Network Rail’s development in Milton Keynes. It will be led by Chris Edwards who was a finalist at this year’s Construction Manager of the Year Awards.

“BAM is able to offer strength in depth to support the demands of this project and deliver the quality and service we know that Network Rail will expect.”

Network Rail is aiming to achieve a BREEAM (2008) Excellent rating for the centre. The proposed development will take advantage of a range of passive measures designed to regulate temperature and reduce energy use, including an optimised   orientation, a heavyweight exposed structure, narrow floor plans, high soffits and natural ventilation, which are all complemented by very high efficiency, low carbon systems.  

Other environmental features include extensive living roofs that will greatly enhance and encourage diverse habitats for flora and fauna in the centre of Milton Keynes, and sizable rainwater harvesting systems which will be used to flush toilets and irrigate the landscaping.

In addition to the selection of new, environmentally sustainable, materials, Network Rail also plans to recycle material from the National Hockey Stadium and, wherever possible, materials will be sourced locally cutting the number of lorries and further reducing the carbon footprint of the development.  The Homes and Communities Agency has already started work to clear the site.

A planning application for the development was submitted to Milton Keynes Council on 30 October 2009.

Notes to editors

As well as BAM construction, other contractors and consultants working on the national centre include:

GMW Architects – Architect and workplace designer

Mace – Project manager

Waterman – Civil and structural engineer and environmental consultants

Scott Wilson – Building services engineer, sustainability and building physics consultants

Sense – Quantity surveyor

Capita Lovejoy – Landscape architect

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About Network Rail

We own, operate and develop Britain's railway infrastructure; that's 20,000 miles of track, 30,000 bridges, tunnels and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations. We run 20 of the UK's largest stations while all the others, over 2,500, are run by the country's train operating companies.

Usually, there are almost five million journeys made in the UK and over 600 freight trains run on the network. People depend on Britain's railway for their daily commute, to visit friends and loved ones and to get them home safe every day. Our role is to deliver a safe and reliable railway, so we carefully manage and deliver thousands of projects every year that form part of the multi-billion pound Railway Upgrade Plan, to grow and expand the nation's railway network to respond to the tremendous growth and demand the railway has experienced - a doubling of passenger journeys over the past 20 years.

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