Select Committee on Transport, Local Government and the Regions Appendices to the Minutes of Evidence

Supplementary memorandum by the Department of Transport, Local Government and the Regions (LU 12D)


  I understand that the Secretary of State spoke to Mrs Dunwoody about progress towards completing the competitions for the modernisation of the Tube, and offered to send details of the timetable.

  Final bids for the modernisation contracts were received on Friday 4 January, as expected. I understand that contracts are very nearly in their final form, but there are one or two outstanding issues that London Underground expects to resolve shortly with bidders and their funders. Once all the outstanding issues have been resolved London Underground and their advisers will complete their evaluation. I understand that the London Transport Board expects to consider the results of the evaluation at its meeting on 7 February. If the LT Board concludes that the deals represent value for money, London Underground will need to consult the Mayor and Transport for London before the final decision can be taken.

  As you know, the Secretary of State has commissioned Ernst and Young to give him an independent review of the overall robustness of London Underground's value for money evaluation. The exact timing of their report depends on London Underground's progress, but I anticipate that Ernst and Young's report will be completed in early February. As the Secretary of State made clear to the Select Committee, he will publish the Ernst and Young report around the time that London Underground formally consults the Mayor and TfL, which should be shortly after the 7 February LT Board meeting. Copies of the report will be made available to Members of the Committee.

  I understand that, if London Underground concludes that the deals represent value for money, then, once it has consulted the Mayor and TfL, it expects to be able to take the final decision in the light of that consultation during March. Contracts could then be signed before the end of this financial year, prior to the transfer of the infrastructure companies to the private sector. This transfer can only take place if and when the safety arrangements are accepted by the independent Health and Safety Executive.

15 January 2002

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