Smart motorways investment for England announced

Highways England has today appointed six joint-venture companies to design and build 10 smart motorways across England as part of a £1.5 billion investment.

Three of these projects will start in autumn this year: two in the Midlands – on the M1 from Junction 19 to Junction 16 in Northamptonshire and on the M5 from Junction 4a to Junction 6 in Worcestershire – and one in the North West on the M6 between Junctions 16 to 19 near Stoke-on-Trent.

The smart motorway schemes, part of the £15 billion taxpayer investment Highways England is delivering between now and 2021, will see 292 extra lane miles added to motorways.  The hard shoulder will be converted to a traffic lane and signing and technology will tell drivers what speed to drive at, if lanes are blocked or closed and about incidents up ahead.

Construction contractors appointed are Balfour Beatty and VINCI joint venture (Vinci’s subsidiaries are VINCI Construction Grands Projets and Taylor Woodrow), Costain and Galliford Try joint venture, and Carillion and Kier joint venture.  With designers being a CHM2 and Hyder joint venture, Amey and Arup joint venture, and Jacobs and Atkins joint venture.

Valued at up to £1.55 billion in total, this is the second major procurement to be awarded under Highways England’s Collaborative Delivery Framework (CDF). The first was the appointment of designers and contractors for the A14 Cambridge to Huntingdon improvement which was announced last month.

Roads Minister, Andrew Jones, said: “As part of our long-term economic plan, we are investing more than £1.5 billion over the next five years in upgrading congested sections of motorway. This means better journeys for millions of people across the country, easier access to jobs, and stronger links between towns and cities. This is good for the economy and good for Britain.”

Highways England smart motorway programme director, Andy Watson, added: “We have awarded these contracts to the companies who demonstrated to us they will work together, across all the projects, not just the ones they have been awarded.  They proved they are driven to get the best results on price, quality and on reducing impact on road users: keeping the motorways flowing while they construct these vital improvements.”

Details of the projects:

The Balfour Beatty and VINCI joint venture have won a construction package including delivery of the M5 Junctions 4a to 6 smart motorway in Worcestershire, starting this autumn at a value of £45.4 million.

They have also been appointed to construct two future schemes: on the M6 from Junctions 2 to 4 in the Midlands, expected to start work in 2017/18, and the M4 between Junctions 3 and 12 from London through Berkshire due to start work in 2016/17, at an estimated combined value of up to £562 million.  CHM2 and Hyder joint venture have been appointed as the designers for these two future schemes, valued between £25 to £30 million.

The Costain and Galliford Try joint venture have won a construction package including delivery of the M1 from Junctions 19 to 16 smart motorway in Northamptonshire, starting this autumn at a value of £65.39 million.

They have also been appointed to construct two future schemes: on the M1 between Junctions 24 and 25 in the East Midlands, and from Junction 13 to 16 in Bedfordshire and Northamptonshire, both expected to start work in 2016/17, at an estimated combined value of up to £302.3 million.  Amey and Arup joint venture have been appointed as the designers for these two future schemes, valued between £20 to £25 million.

The Carillion and Kier joint venture have won a construction package including delivery of the M6 Junction 16 to 19 in Staffordshire and Cheshire, starting this autumn at a value of £129.5 million.

They have also been appointed to construct three future schemes: the M6 from Junction 13 to 15 in Staffordshire, the M20 between Junctions 3 and 5 in Kent, and the M23 from Junction 8 down to 10 in Surrey and West Sussex, all expected to start work 2017/18, at an estimated combined value of up to £345 million. Jacobs and Atkins joint venture have appointed as the designers of these three future schemes, valued between £20 to £25 million.

Highways England says the value of construction and design contracts for those projects starting after 2015/16 are indicative as the schemes are in early development phase.  Highways England will work with the contractors to agree final target costs.

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