NEC4 TSC Option A - How to set total of the prices with unknown quantities

I am currently working with a local authority who is migrating to the NEC suite of contracts. The highways drainage contract will be on an NEC4 TSC Option A but I am unclear as to how the price list should be populated as “expected quantities” are set within this and we have a large amount of unknown quantities at the outset.

In terms of process, we know that there are 100,000 gully pot cleanses that need to be carried out, but this activity will also inform the repair and replacement works that will be required but are unknown until the cleanse has taken place.

There is therefore no way to accurately include an expected quantity for the repair works to build up the total of the prices.

One route I am considering would be to allow the contractor to submit a rate against the unknown items but leave the expected quantity at 0. I can then further into the contract issue a task order for the repair works once we have established the quantities for each item.

Is this the way to go in my case? I would appreciate any input.

Kind regards,

Firstly put yourself in the Contractor’s position, how can they give you a rate if they have no idea what the quantity will be? Generally speaking rates go down when quantities increase as the Contractor can be more efficient at delivering larger volumes of work than smaller ones.

The Client should have access to historic data that can be used as a basis for establishing quantities however you should also note that NEC4 TSC places the risk of significant changes in quantities with the Client rather than the Contractor. This is by virtue of the compensation event at clause 60.2.

Having worked on and drafted a number of these style of repair and maintenance contracts over the years I know that (1) the TSC does not necessarily work without significant amendment and (2) the Scope and Price List need to be defined carefully to make sure the contract works as intended from a commercial point of view.

Your Client should accept that it is not sensible to transfer the risk of unknown quantities to the Contractor and should develop a contract strategy that reflects this as well as producing a contract that is as straightforward as possible for the Parties to manage.