Transport deals provide rich pickings for City project teams

Allen & Overy‘s (A&O), Ashurst‘s, CMS Cameron McKenna’s, Denton Wilde Sapte’s (DWS) and Herbert Smith’s project practices have all received boosts this month through key London transport infrastructure deals.

However, the news has not been as good for Linklaters, which has been driven out of the £5bn M25 widening project after its client was cut from the shortlist of bidders.

Herbert Smith, led by infrastructure partner Nicholas Tott, is advising Transport for London (TfL) on its £363m East London Line project, which awarded the contract to a consortium made up of construction companies Carillion and Balfour Beatty.

The project is the cornerstone of TfL’s £10bn transport network overhaul and was central to the successful London 2012 Olympic bid.

The consortium has so far kept its legal work in-house, with Carillion, led by head of legal services Richard Tapp, and Balfour Beatty, led by head of legal Frank McCormack, understood to be sharing the workload.

At the same time, the Highways Agency, advised by DWS infrastructure partner Ellen Gates, has named a shortlist for the M25 widening project.

The final stage of the tender process for the design, build, finance and operate contract is expected to take up most of 2007.

A&O, Ashurst and Camerons are the three firms advising the remaining consortia.

A&O projects partner David Lee is advising the Amey, Laing O’Rourke and Ferrovial consortium, while Ashurst is advising the Connect Plus consortium, headed by Balfour Beatty and Skanska. Camerons project finance partner Trevor Butcher is advising the Flow consortium, which is headed by Vinci, Carillion and Costain.