The US’ Parsons Brinckerhoff has been selected for the strategic project management contract for the $35bn Qatar Integrated Rail Programme (QIRP).

The company has received a letter of intent, say sources close to the project.

Qatar Railways Company (QRail) reviewed three bids for the deal in July. The bidders were Bechtel, Fluor and Parsons Brinckerhoff (MEED 25:7:11). The US’ Fluor was initially thought to be favourite for the deal.

Qatari Prime Minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jabr al-Thani held meetings in the first week of August to discuss progress of Qatar’s various rail projects.

QRail is planning to develop a number of rail projects in time for 2022 when it will host the Fifa World Cup event. These projects include the Doha metro, West Bay people-mover, a number of other people-movers, a freight railway to link the ports down the east coast of Qatar and a high-speed passenger line.

Parsons Brinckerhoff will at first focus on the Doha metro scheme.

QRail is progressing well with its plans. A US joint venture of Aecom-Parsons is the project management consultant for the Lusail LRT. The development of the Lusail LRT will include building about 20 kilometres of double track and about 10km of single track. It will also involve building 25 passenger stations and a further eight stations underground.

A project management for the West Bay people-mover is pending and QRail received seven or eight bids for this contract on 8 March.

QRail has also invited consortiums to submit expressions of interest by 11 September for the design and construction of the infrastructure and civil works of Doha metro.

The Doha metro will have four lines and 100 stations when complete.

Most of the QIRP needs to be delivered well in advance of the 2022 deadline. The entire system is scheduled to be complete by 2026.