The Qatar Railways Company (QRC) plans to award up to 12 separate tunnelling contracts that could be worth up to $1.5bn each as part of the QR120bn ($30bn) Qatar Integrated Railway Project (QIRP), QRC managing director Abdulla bin Abdulaziz Turki al-Subaie told the MEED Qatar Transport Conference on 7 June.

Other key elements of the project will be contracts for light rail in Doha that will be worth $500m-$800m each. Separate packages are to be put out to tender for the stations.

Al-Subaie said that the execution strategy calls for design and build contracts to accelerate the delivery of the project. Key elements, including the rail links to stadiums to be built for the 2022 World Cup finals, will have to be completed in 2020.

Plans call for the creation of three logistics parks in the Doha area to deal with the volume of material to be used in the project. Al-Subaie said the QRC is also studying alternative ways of disposing of the huge amount of spoil that will be created by the tunnelling work in Doha. This might include the creation of a spoil rail transport system.  He said that it is estimated that 18 million cubic metres of spoil will be generated.

Al-Subaie said that expressions of interest for the first contracts are being invited. “Some of the packages will be tendered by June 2012,” Al Subaie said.