J Kumar Infraprojects, Tata Projects and NCC are the 3 construction firms that have submitted tenders for completing pending civil work on a 5.868 km section (Package C102) of Mumbai Metro’s Line-2B (Yellow Line) between MTNL – Chembur stations.
Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) had originally awarded a contract for this section’s construction, comprising of 5 stations and an “iconic bridge” over Mithi River, to RCC Infra Ventures – MBZ JV in 2017, but terminated it in January 2020 due to poor progress on key performance indicators.
MMRDA has tried re-appointing a contractor four times since then and re-invited bids in February 2020, August 2020, April 2021 and August 2021. In the August 2020 round, NCC was the lowest bidder, but their bid value at Rs. 719.27 crore was way higher than MMRDA’s estimate of Rs. 568.55 crore. Subsequent negotiations between MMRDA and NCC failed.
Bids were re-invited in April with a 30 month deadline and Rs. 631.82 crore estimate, but that round was abruptly cancelled. MMRDA then re-invited bids in August with a 36 month deadline and Rs. 635.71 crore estimate.
Brief Scope of Package C102: Part Design and Construction of Balance Works of Package CA06, Elevated Viaduct and 5 Elevated Stations viz. MTNL Metro, S. G. Barve Marg, Kurla East, EEH and Chembur (excluding Architectural Finishing and Pre-Engineered Steel Roof Structure of Stations) from Chainage 46860.384m to Chainage 52729.312 of Line 2B [D.N Nagar-Mandale] of Mumbai Metro Rail Project of MMRDA.
The section over Mithi River includes a 261.241 meter “iconic bridge” designed by Designfakt India with Tony Gee as its structural designer. Its new design has been tweaked a bit since 2020 possibly to reduce cost – view the old design here.
Tata Projects took part in the February 2020 retender but shied away from other rounds, so their re-entry is a surprise. Traditionally – J Kumar, NCC and Larsen & Toubro have bid in all retenders for C102.
Anyhow, the bids have now been sent for technical evaluation which can take a couple months to complete. When that is done, the financial bids of the technically qualified bidders will be opened to reveal who’s the lowest bidder and most likely contractor.
With recent developments – I see parts of Line-2B opening up no sooner than 2024, with the MTNL – Chembur section easily 5 years away from becoming operational.