Turkey’s Baytur Construction & Contracting Company has started building the estimated SR3bn ($800m) teaching hospital at King Khaled University at Abha.

The three-year contract covers the construction of an 800-bed student hospital, and nine buildings of four to five floors to be used as medical, dentistry and pharmacy colleges, and a library.

Baytur submitted the highest bid in late February, but King Khaled University subsequently changed the scope of the contract, leaving the Turkish firm in a much stronger position, according to a source close to the project.

The other bidders are Al-Saad General Contracting Company, Abdullah al-Khodari Sons Company, Saudi Binladin Group, Al-Rashid Trading & Contracting Company (all local), Beijing Construction Engineering Group, and Guangdong Construction Engineering Group Corporation (MEED 5:6:09).