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National £3bn contractor framework launched
Heather Church - November 17, 2014

Contractors have been invited to bid for a national £3bn social infrastructure framework run by contracting authority NPS.

The brand new Social Infrastructure Development (SID) framework will be used to deliver projects that span the public sector, from schools and housing through to police stations and care homes.

The SID framework will be used to design, finance and construct social infrastructure projects funded through the development of land, which will be transferred to framework winners (see box).

NPS is planning to appoint five contractors to the framework for a period of four years.

It is anticipated the panel will be used to procure up to £3bn of development and construction, with projects ranging from £3m – £50m in value.

Contractors wishing to be considered for the framework have been invited to submit a pre-qualification questionnaire by noon on 12 December. Between eight and 10 respondents will then be invited to tender.

Following assessment of the submissions received in response to the invitation to tender, successful applicants will be selected for a place on the framework, with it going live from April 2015.

Mike Britch, managing director of NPS Group said the framework would take NPS Group’s has a “proven track record of delivering programmes on behalf of public authorities” to the “next level”.

He said: “Able to deliver nationally across the full spectrum of public assets, we hope that SID becomes the framework of choice for any public authority or charitable body looking to develop both assets and services locally to reflect the needs of their community.”

Cornerstone Property Assets, the firm set up by former schools capital boss Tim Byles, is offering support to local authorities, charities and schools that wish to deliver projects through the framework.

Others in the sector have also invited to support the SID framework in a similar way.

Tim Byles, chief executive of Cornerstone, said: “In many ways, this is the next turn of the wheel for public procurement.

“We know that public authorities face significant challenge in squaring the circle of increased – and increasing – demands on local services on the one hand, whilst having significant surplus assets that demand time and resources to maintain on the other.

“The SID Framework marks a new chapter in public procurement – be that for school places, new homes, or adult social care provision – and we are delighted to be one of the brokers to partner with NPS to bring to life this new delivery channel.”

How the framework will work

Public or charitable bodies wishing to use the SID Framework will identify land for transfer and shape an outline scheme and development brief prior to engaging a framework member through a mini competition process.

The framework member will be offered an option or conditional sale agreement on a site and will then create value by developing and delivering a scheme which incorporates, for example, new build housing, but which also may include delivery of additional public asset/s on other sites remaining in the client’s ownership.

This may, for example, include the provision of new school buildings wholly funded by the housing development, or the delivery of wider public benefits, as part of the deal. The framework member and the public or charitable sector organisation will also share any additional value created