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Search for Google developer narrowed to three

A source said to be close to the negotiations told the website Construction News in early March that Balfour Beatty has been cut from the list of potential developers for Google’s new multi-million UK headquarters.

The competition to build the £300m site in London’s King’s Cross has been intense, with major names in the industry all throwing their weight behind bids. The ruling out of Balfour Beatty’s bid leaves just three still in the running: Skanska, Bam Construct and Carillion. Kier pulled out of its own volition earlier in the process.

The final decision is expected to be made later in March 2013. Subcontractors from concrete flooring contractors to office interior design agencies will then be appointed by the autumn.

It is little surprise that renowned contractors have put themselves in the mix for the contract. A one million square foot office space, it will be on a vast scale. It needs to be too, with somewhere in the region of 4,000 employees needing to be accommodated.

Construction News understands that the pricing of the Balfour Beatty bid was a key factor in the contractor being ruled out of the running at this stage. No one from the firm, Google, or the development manager, Argent, has commented on the news at the time of writing.

Construction work is set to get underway later this year, with final handover to Google expected in 2016. The search engine giant is expected to move into the development in three stages though, with the lease on its present Victoria base due to expire imminently.

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