Qatar Railways Company (QRail) has cancelled the tender for a project management consultancy contract (PMC) for the QR10bn ($2.7bn) West Bay people-mover project.

“It’s dead now. The original PMC was cancelled last week,” says a Doha-based source. The reason for the cancellation of the PMC is unclear, although the project was thought to have been too expensive to carry out underground.

In June, the UK’s Atkins began a six-week review of the West Bay people-mover aimed at advising QRail on whether to develop it at grade-level, elevated or underground (MEED 12:6:11).

Selected companies have now been asked to redesign the system.

QRail received bids for the PMC for the West Bay people-mover on 29 March. An award was initially expected in June.

The automated people mover will connect the Doha Convention Centre & Tower to major points in the West Bay area. The first phase will transport 5,900 passengers an hour in each direction with 10 stations and about 42 cars.

QRail has been operational since March 2011 and it is responsible for the development of Qatar’s $35bn rail programme, including the West Bay people-mover. It is a joint venture of Qatari Diar Real Estate Investment Company and Germany’s Deutsche Bahn.

Automated people-movers are also planned in other areas of Doha, including Education City and Lusail City, where the Fifa World Cup will be held in 2022.