Latest Rail News

29.05.15

Deadline for TPE franchise bids has passed

Yesterday marked the deadline for shortlisted companies to submit their bids for the TransPennine Express franchise.

Stagecoach, First and a joint venture between Keolis and Go-Ahead had until 28 May to put together their bids detailing how they would deliver all the requirements set out in the Invitation To Tender published in February.

The ITT required bidders to show how they would introduce extra capacity for passengers through more carriages, increased frequencies or more services.

It included a provision to ensure all trains in the fleet are wi-fi enabled by 2020, as well as providing earlier and later services and more services on Sundays.

The DfT also wants to see options for new services such as links between Liverpool and Scotland, Crewe to Manchester Airport and extending Newcastle services to Edinburgh.

On rolling stock, the tender specifies that the new TransPennine franchisee lease the current fleet of 10 four-car Class 350 EMUs until at least 19 September 2018, and sub-lease rolling stock to Northern until December 2017.

The franchise is currently operated jointly by First Group and Keolis. In March the Department for Transport announced that it had reached an agreement for it to continue to run service until April 2016, bringing its end date in line with the Northern franchise.

A DfT spokesperson said: “The deadline for applications for the TPE franchise was Thursday 28 May. The department is now considering the bids received and an announcement will be made in due course. It would not be appropriate to comment further.”

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