Dubai’s Roads & Transport Authority (RTA) has asked bidders to resubmit prices for a contract to advise on a public-private partnership (PPP) deal to develop the Union station area on the emirate’s metro.

Five firms are understood to have submitted bids for the PPP advisory mandate, but only three have been asked to resubmit bids with lower prices.

“The RTA sent a letter to everyone saying they were too expensive and asking them to resubmit their bids. We were a bit surprised,” says a source at one of the bidders. The new bids are due on 21 February.

The three firms invited to resubmit their bids are consortiums led by the UK’s Ernst & Young, PricewaterhouseCoopers, and Grant Thornton. They received a letter asking them to rebid for the project in mid-February after submitting initial bids by 23 January.

The RTA sent a letter to everyone saying they were too expensive and asking them to resubmit their bids

Source at one of the bidders

The Union station PPP is intended to involve the development of land around the station to create an “iconic transit hub”, according to sources who have seen the initial request for proposals sent to consultants in early January. Bidders have been asked to come up three separate designs for the development of the area.

The RTA declined to comment on the scheme.