This update contains information to help you better understand developments on England’s largest road improvement scheme. Read on for details about this major project’s future milestones.
Update on the Development Consent Order
A lot has happened since the last stakeholder newsletter in March. At the time, our Development Consent Order (DCO) was in, what is termed, the ‘pre-examination’ phase of the consenting process. More information on the planning process can be viewed here.
The preliminary meeting to discuss the examination of the scheme’s DCO took place on Wednesday 13 May. An audio recording and note of the preliminary meeting can be found here.
The end of the preliminary meeting signals the start of the six month examination period and the Planning Inspectorate (PINS) have now issued the examination timetable.
Guidance on the examination process, including information about who can take part is available here. Further information about getting involved can be found here.
Update on contractors
Contractors have been appointed to design and plan how the multi-million pound improvement to the A14 in Cambridgeshire will be built.
The contracts have been awarded under Highways England’s Collaborative Delivery Framework (CDF).
Due to the size of the project, it has been broken down into development (detailed design and pre-construction) and delivery phases, with construction of the proposed scheme split into four contract packages. The detailed design contract has been awarded to Atkins CH2M joint venture at a total cost of £35.3m. The initial award is for the development phase at a value of £19.6m. If the scheme is given the go ahead the joint venture will provide design support and site assurance services throughout the scheme to a value of £15.7m.Costain Skanska Joint Venture have been awarded construction package one, covering A1 at Alconbury to the East Coast Mainline; and package two, covering east of the East Coast Mainline to Swavesey. The value of the pre-construction phase is £1m. If the scheme is given the go ahead, the joint venture will deliver £598m of construction work.
There are two construction packages still to be awarded, the third, widening the existing A14 from Swavesey to Milton, is being tendered and is due to be awarded in the summer.
The fourth package is for the demolition of the viaduct over the East Coast Mainline at Huntingdon and associated works – this will be tendered under the CDF in 2019.
Subject to the outcome of the development consent order examination by the Planning Inspectorate, and to the Transport Secretary’s decision regarding our development consent order application, the proposed scheme is on target for main construction work to start in late 2016. The new bypass and widened A14 would open to traffic in 2020.
Chris Taylor, Director for Complex Infrastructure at Highways England, leading the A14 Cambridge to Huntingdon improvement scheme, said:
“The A14 Cambridge to Huntingdon improvement scheme is the first major award under the CDF and is to enable delivery of an up to £1.5 billion investment of national importance.
“We have raised the standards we expect from our supply partners – we expect quality of performance and for them to work collaboratively to deliver the excellence that our customers and stakeholders expect of us.
“We continue to be committed to working closely with our framework suppliers to ensure our expectations are clear and well understood.”
“While we appreciate our development consent order is yet to be fully examined by the Planning Inspectorate and we are yet to receive permission to start construction, these appointments will give us the support we need to prepare for works getting underway on time and to budget.”
Andrew Wyllie, Chief Executive of Costain, commented:
“The A14 is a strategically vital transport corridor and we are delighted to have secured the development stage of this major improvement project. It reflects our reputation for delivering solutions to infrastructure needs in long-term, strategic partnerships with customers.”
Glennan Blackmore, Operations Director, Skanska said:
“We are extremely proud to be part of the team that will deliver significant infrastructure improvement to the strategic roads network, the region and the UK economy”.
Philip Hoare, Group Managing Director for Atkins’ Transportation division said:
“The A14 scheme will bring a much needed and long awaited improvement to the road network between Huntingdon and Cambridge that will significantly improve performance and customer experience when it opens in 2020. Along with our partner CH2M, we are delighted to have been awarded the design contract for the scheme and look forward to providing our expertise and innovation to support Highways England in the successful delivery of this important project.”
Peter McDermott, CH2M’s Director of Highways and Bridges, said:
“CH2M is delighted to be partnering with Atkins to deliver this important project. We have a long history of working for Highways England road upgrade programmes and look forward to continuing this relationship on a project that will bring about massive improvements to the road network in Cambridgeshire and provide a major boost to the economy in East Anglia.”
Improving connectivity – what does the scheme mean for you?
One of the key objectives of the scheme is to improve connectivity. The new bypass would offer an alternative for non-local traffic that currently has to travel through Huntingdon.
By placing the right traffic on the right roads, the proposed scheme has the potential to free up local capacity for all types of road user, including pedestrians, cyclists and equestrians.
If our scheme goes ahead, large sections of the existing A14 would eventually be removed from the strategic road network. Providing an alternative route for local traffic to the existing A14 would also reconnect communities such as Hemingford and Fenstanton who are currently separated by a busy through road.
Better sustainable transport links
With the exception of the Guided Busway, there are currently limited routes available to people who wish to walk or cycle between towns and villages along the route of the current A14. Historic works have removed previous paths and access routes.
The new scheme proposes several miles of routes suitable for walking, cycling and horse-back, connecting Fenstanton, Swavesey, Bar Hill, Dry Drayton and Girton whilst a new bridleway would also link Brampton with Brampton Woods and Brampton Hut Services.
Two new footbridges at Swavesey junction and Bar Hill are also proposed. These bridges link employment areas, residential areas and villages that were previously difficult to travel to without a car.
Keep up to date with our work.
Visit our website for more information about the scheme, www.highways.gov.uk/A14C2H
An update on our ecology work is also available here
Or send us an email:
Or give us a call: 0300 123 5000
You can contact us with questions or queries.