Bahrain’s Works, Municipalities Affairs and Urban Planning Ministry is reviewing technical bids submitted by four consultancies for work on the Bahrain Northern Link Road (BNLR).

The BLNR is one of two northern peripheral road links that will handle both road and rail traffic from the planned King Hamad Causeway, the second bridge to link Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, which will accommodate either just road or road and rail traffic.

The consultancy and engineering services firms understood to have submitted technical and financial offers for the BNLR scheme include France’s Egis International, the US’ Parsons Global Services and Aecom, and Kuwait’s Dar SSH International.

The evaluation of financial offers will commence once the technical evaluation is completed.

The BLNR is envisaged to be a 15-kilometre arterial road featuring six or eight lanes that could either run alongside a light rail or rapid bus transit system.

The other road, called the Bahrain Outer Link Road (BOLR), is 20km long and will extend from the new causeway to Khalifa bin Salman Port. Like the BNLR, it will include a motorway and rail lines to handle freight and passengers.

The planned 20km King Hamad Causeway will be the second bridge to link Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, and will include a station and a freight yard on reclaimed land to the northwest of Muharraq. Canada’s SNC Lavalin is understood to have conducted the feasibility study on the new causeway project, which highlights two alignment options, both of which are to the north of the existing causeway.

The existing King Fahd Causeway was opened in 1986 and extends for a total length of 25km. The bridge cost an estimated $1.2bn to construct. On average, the bridge serves about 45,000 vehicles a day. That figure increases to about 60,000 vehicles during weekends. The bridge has been undergoing an expansion to ease severe congestion during peak periods.