100 new jobs created for Queensferry Crossing steel delivery phase

100 new jobs have been created in Rosyth as the first of four shipments of steel arrives for the Queensferry Crossing, signalling the start of a major new phase of work at the dockyards.

Transport Minister Keith Brown visited Rosyth today to meet some of the new employees on the project and hear how the majority of deck preparations are now happening on site before they are lifted into position on the bridge.

Mr Brown said:

“I welcome the creation of 100 new jobs at the Queensferry Crossing to coincide with the steel delivery phase, in addition to the already over 1,000 people directly employed on site.

“Today the sheer scale of the operations required to build the Queensferry Crossing becomes clear with the tower structures and v-shaped viaduct piers visibly rising steadily from the Forth for all to see. Over 28,000 tonnes of steel is being delivered across a total of four shipments on huge 250 metre long ships like the one arriving today.

“The arrival of the steel deck units is yet another milestone for Scotland’s biggest infrastructure project in a generation and progress continues on schedule and under budget.

“Each steel deck unit weighs 250 tonnes when it arrives. The major fabrication process here at Rosyth dockyards involves adding a further 500 tonnes of concrete before the units are then taken out to form their part of the final bridge.

“The Queensferry Crossing presents £6 billion worth of opportunities to the Scottish economy through Scottish businesses and sub-contractors along the supply chain—already £157 million worth of subcontracts and supply orders from the project have been awarded to over 360 Scottish companies.

“The huge order of steel needed for the Queensferry Crossing is being met by ZPMC which has the production capability and resilience to deliver the quantity of high quality steel for the Queensferry Crossing within the timescales demanded.”

Notes to editors

Mark Dunlop : 01383 421397 : 07920 595 449


  • The FRC is Scotland’s biggest transport infrastructure project in a generation
  • The Queensferry Crossing is being built on time and under budget
  • The current budget range for the project is £1.4 to £1.45 billion, down from £1.45 billion to £1.60 billion in 2011
  • The British Chambers of Commerce estimated the additional benefits through supply chain and sub-contract opportunities for Scottish businesses would be worth around £6 billion to the Scottish economy. (BCC press release, February 2010)
  • Around 80 per cent of the contractor’s procurement for the project has now been completed
  • £157 million worth of subcontracts and supply orders from the project have been awarded to over 360 Scottish companies
  • Current international market rates for fabricated steel would suggest that the subcontracts for steel would represent between 5 and 10% (£39-79 million) of the FRC Principal Contract's total value.

Forth Replacement Crossing fact file

  • In 2010 a key element of procurement strategy for the FRC was the necessity for delivery of a completed crossing by the end of 2016
  • Clear issues with the future viability of the Forth Road Bridge (FRB) and the potential for restrictions to HGVs posed serious risks for the Scottish economy
  • It was well established through the Parliamentary process, that the FRB has lost 10 per cent of its main cable strength and – with roughly 70,000 vehicles crossing the bridge each day – the lack of resilience to high wind or breakdowns and the disruption likely to be caused by ongoing maintenance could not be ignored
  • The need for the crossing, the timescales involved and how they related to the proposed procurement strategy was explored in depth and detail during the Bill process. It was passed with broad cross party support.in December 2010
  • Ensuring materials could be supplied efficiently in the quantity and timescale required would clearly have been a major factor in any bid for the contract to build the bridge
  • Sourcing the steel from an supplier the size of ZPMC would is expected to have made a considerable contribution to the contract to build the bridge coming in at £790 million, significantly below the original estimated price range of £900 million to £1.2 billion
  • While strictly a commercial matter for FCBC, sourcing a steel supplier with the scale and production resilience to deliver 28,000 tonnes of steel to allow completion within the five and a half year timeframe demanded by the project
  • ZPMC is one of the single biggest manufacturers of steel in the world, their Changxing base, located on the Yangtze River estuary is around 5 kilometres long
  • The ship arriving in Rosyth on May 19 is just one of 26 ships of the same size that ZPMC operate. They have delivered steel for other major international bridge projects including the Oakland Bay Bridge in San Francisco and Hardanger Fjord bridge in Norway
  • Even though the Queensferry Crossing will be the tallest bridge in the UK and one of the biggest bridges of its type in the world, we estimate it represents around a maximum of 5 per cent of ZPMC’s current order book
  • An operation of this incredible scale provides the reliability and resilience required to produce such a large quantity and quality of steel within such demanding timescales
  • The procurement strategy for the project was explored in depth and detail and overwhelmingly backed by Parliament in 2010. That strategy clearly required the Queensferry Crossing be built in five and a half years – a challenging timescale made absolutely necessary by the condition and ongoing viability of the Forth Road Bridge

Published 19 May 2014