- U.S. firm CH2M Hill Inc. has won Qatar's World Cup program management contract and will oversee the construction of sports facilities in the Gulf Arab state, slated to host the tournament in 2022.
The Colorado-based engineering and construction firm beat bids from five other multinational companies, Qatar's 2022 Supreme Committee said in a statement issued late Wednesday.
Other firms in the running for the contract had included British construction consultants Arup, Turner International and Mace, the builder behind London's Shard skyscraper, a construction industry source in Doha said in October.
Mace, one of the key partners on the London Olympics with C2HM Hill and builder Laing O'Rourke, had been tipped as one of the favorites to win the Qatar contract as it had worked with the Qataris on the Shard building which is being funded by the Gulf state.
Qatar, where summer temperatures top 45 degrees Celsius, was the surprise winner of a December 2010 FIFA vote to choose the 2022 host country, edging out Australia, Japan, South Korea and the United States.
It plans to build solar-powered, air-conditioned stadiums to overcome the sweltering summer heat as well as housing, infrastructure and transport for the event.
"Over the next six months we will be working together to develop our road map, which will provide us with delivery timelines for the projects that will occupy us in the coming 10 years," Qatar 2022 Supreme Committee Technical Director Yasir Al Jamal said in the statement.
Qatar will spend $4 billion to host the event, including the cost of constructing stadiums, the committee has said.
The management contract, originally slated to be awarded late last year, will oversee coordination with government agencies on large infrastructure projects, including the construction of nine new stadiums and upgrade of three existing ones.
The committee's Secretary General Hassan Al Thawadi said in June that the country planned to complete construction of the first stadium by 2015.
CH2M Hill, which employs 30,000 people worldwide, has 2,000 staff in the Middle East, of which 200 are currently based in Qatar, the statement said.
(Reporting By Regan Doherty, Editing by Amran Abocar)
Follow us on our social media channels: