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Special Construction Environment and Conditions of MRT Circular Line South Section CF670 Section Contract Leads to Failure of Second Announced Tender

Taipei City DORTS Second District Project Office (2nd DPO) explained that MRT Circular line south section is divided into two section contracts, CF670A section contract construction (including the two underground stations, Station Y01 and Station Y1A, and the water and electricity, environmental controls at each station, and two sections of shield tunnel) and CF670 section contract construction (including the four underground stations, Y2A, Y03, Y04, and Y05, and the water and electricity, environmental controls at each station, and four sections of shield tunnel). Section contract CF670A construction was awarded to Continental Engineering Corporation, and construction commenced on June 13, 2023. The tender for the section contract CF670 was opened on July 12, 2023; however, there were no bidders.

DORTS 2nd DPO further elaborated that in addition to two shield tunnel crossings of the Jingmei River, MRT Circular line south section, has the following construction difficulties:

1.Station Y04 of contract CF670 is adjacent to the Examination Yuan, with exams being held hundreds of days each year, and this easily impacts construction progress as well as workers’ willingness to work.   

2.Beneath Station Y03 there are two-hole drainage box culverts occupying the majority of the road space, and in addition to impacting the construction of the station structure retaining wall, during construction times hanging migration operations must also be considered, and the mutual influence of pipes utilized for people’s livelihoods, such as Taipower, telecommunications, tap water, gas, and sewage must also be taken into account.

3.The Muzha Road is only 22 meters in width, and the original traffic of flow must be maintained; furthermore, during the shield tunneling construction, there is only nine meters of left-over space on the ground for the storage of the ring-shaped lining pieces, which further increases the degree of construction difficulty.

4.Circular line south section runs along a mountainous terrain, the tunnel and station excavation works are all on rock plate, and progress control is difficult; therefore, most construction companies take the construction difficulty of Xinyi eastern extension as a reference and assess the project more conservatively.

5.Most of the residential buildings along Muzha Road have no arcades, and the construction of station structures is very close to the entrances of residential buildings; therefore, noise and the lines of movement for people entering and exiting buildings must be taken into consideration. Moreover, concern over public backlash is also warranted, and multiple construction disadvantages further add to the construction companies’ bidding concerns.

6.International wars have caused the prices of commodities, steel, copper, cement and other bulk materials to skyrocket, further exacerbating inflation. In addition, there is also a labor shortage for the large-scale expansion of the domestic technology industry, and large numbers of public works are also being launched, which further influences the willingness of construction companies to bid.     

DORTS 2nd DPO stated that they will follow the instructions of Taipei City Mayor Chiang Wan-an and conduct a thorough review of the difficult characteristics of the construction environment of this contract and adjust the required budget in order to carry out the tender operations again as soon as possible.