A CONTRACT worth €815m was signed at the end of March for the second phase of work on the 76·3 km Marmaray cross-Bosporus rail link in Istanbul. The Turkish Ministry of Transport has selected the AMD consortium of Alstom, Marubeni and local partner Dogus to undertake the Phase II works, which cover E&M works on the link and upgrading of the railways as far as Halkali on the European side and Gebze on the Asian side.

As consortium leader Alstom will be responsible for installation of trackwork, electrification and signalling, worth k323m. Marubeni will supply the substations, telecommunications, passenger information systems and equipment for the stations and depots. Dogus will undertake civil engineering work including station platforms.

Tenders are to be called in the second half of this year for the Phase III contract, covering the supply of 440 EMU cars to work suburban services, which are expected to start in 2011.

Meanwhile, work is progressing on the Phase I civil engineering work for the link. The first of 11 sections for the 1·8 km immersed tube tunnel under the Bosporus was sunk into position near Big Island in the Sea of Marmara on March 24.