Contractor unveiled for AWPR scheme

Connect Roads is a consortium comprising Balfour Beatty, Galliford Try (Morrison Construction) and Carillion.

The Minister revealed the name from a site on Findon Junction on the A90 where advance works for the project are already underway, just one of a number of advance works being delivered by local firms along the length of the scheme.

Speaking from the works site, Mr Brown said:

“Following the Supreme Court ruling, we said we would complete works on the AWPR scheme by spring 2018. The announcement today ensures we remain well on course, with the contract expected be awarded and construction starting in earnest before the year is out.

“This is great news for the people of Aberdeen and the north-east and underlines our commitment to reversing years of under investment which has led to the kinds of pressures we see on the road network in and around Aberdeen every day.

“Over the next three decades, our investment in the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route project is expected to bring in an additional £6 billion to the local economy and create around 14,000 new jobs. During construction we would expect to see benefits similar in scale to the recently completed M74 scheme, which directly generated 900 construction jobs. It will also provide on-the-job training for apprentices and local employment opportunities.

“AWPR advance works are well underway with small and medium sized businesses (SMEs) from the north-east already benefiting – a contract worth nearly half a million pounds for the construction of a local connecting road here at Findon Junction is just one case in point.

“Very few EU countries have a higher level of spending in their SME sector than Scotland. SME’s represent some 37 per cent of the economy, and get a 46% slice of the £10 billion public procurement spend every year, so are already successful in competing for public contracts.

“We want to see more of this success across Scotland, including the north east. Our commitment to improvements at the Haudagain Roundabout once the AWPR is finished, a new Inveramsay Bridge on the A96, and a longer term £3 billion commitment to dual the key route between Aberdeen and Inverness - will all support local businesses and the economy across the region, and well as deliver tangible improvements - up to 27 minutes off journey times - for the thousands of drivers who use the roads across the north east.”

When the AWPR scheme is finished the substantial benefits will be felt across the whole of the north east of Scotland, providing a boost to the economy, and increase in business and tourism opportunities, improve safety, and cut congestion, as well as increasing opportunities for improvements in public transport facilities.

Aberdeen City Council leader Jenny Laing added:

"Today's announcement marks an extremely important milestone in the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route / Balmedie-Tipperty project. Aberdeen City Council has expressed its commitment to the scheme for a number of years and we undertook, along with our partners, to progress it as quickly as possible following the successful Supreme Court ruling in favour of the new road.

"This council has made a significant investment in the project’s delivery with its outstanding funding contribution now capped at £75m. This demonstrates the importance of the project to the city and the wider north east.

"The announcement today of Connect Roads being appointed the preferred bidder to build the road reflects our commitment and determination to get things moving.

“The AWPR/B-T scheme will transform the North-east’s transportation system. It will shorten journey times and make them more reliable. By attracting traffic from less suitable local roads it will provide a safer environment both in the city and shire. This will allow us to consider other transportation opportunities to lock in the benefits that this new road will bring.

"From an economic perspective it will encourage business growth and boost the local, Scottish and UK economy by making this area even more attractive to business than it already is.

“Aberdeen City Council is the managing agent for the scheme acting on behalf of the funding partners. This council has a very good project management record and I am confident that the construction of the AWPR/B-T will run as smoothly as many of our other major projects, including the refurbishment of Marischal College."

Leader of Aberdeenshire Council, Jim Gifford, concluded:

“The confirmation of a preferred bidder is an important step in this development.

“The project will bring north and north-west Aberdeenshire businesses closer to their marketplace, and allow expanded access to job opportunities across the north-east.

“We also see the AWPR as having an important function in improving road safety through the removal of traffic from many of our rural roads in Aberdeenshire while also linking key locations with an improved standard of road network.”

Notes to editors

1. The AWPR consists of four sections: Balmedie to Tipperty (12km between Blackdog and Tipperty); the Northern Leg (16.1km between North Kingswells and Blackdog), the Southern Leg (18.7km between Charleston and North Kingswells) and the Fastlink (11.5km between Stonehaven and Cleanhill). The new road will be dual carriageway with two lanes in each direction, except for the section between North Kingswells Junction and Craibstone Junction, which will have three lanes in each direction. The existing Trunk Road south of Charleston Junction, will also be widened to three lane dual carriageway for a short section between Charleston and the next junction to the south at Findon.

2. The 320 metre section of the C5K (Findon junction road) is being constructed by W M Donald Ltd from Stonehaven.

3. When completed, the AWPR will shave up to 27 minutes off journeys and will provide opportunities to develop and expand public transport. It is expected to carry over 43,000 vehicles per day through the busiest section.

4. Balfour Beatty infrastructure business has a proven track record of developing and financing projects over the last 15 years and manages a portfolio of schemes primarily in the education, health and roads/street lighting sectors. Balfour Beatty currently employs around 40,000 world-wide.

5. Carillion is one of the UK's leading integrated support services companies and for over 200 years it has been creating award-winning cultural, residential, commercial, community and infrastructure developments in cities across the world. It employs over 40,000 people worldwide, with annual revenues of more than £4 billion.

6. Galliford Try (Morrison) is a leading construction company, employing around 4,000 staff. It manages building and infrastructure works across the UK and is currently working as part of the FCBC consortium on the construction of the Queensferry Crossing - the largest infrastructure project in Scotland for a generation and the single largest project let by Transport Scotland to date.

7. The AWPR/B-T is the largest project being procured to date as part of the £2.5bn Scottish Government’s Non-Profit Distributing Model (NPD), which helps to deliver economies of scale and efficiencies for the public purse and follows the successful procurement of the M8 M73 M74 Motorway Improvements Project earlier this year.

8. The new road will also greatly improve road safety and accessibility by playing an essential role in reducing frustration and accidents and providing easier access to and from a number of communities and locations.

9. As this scheme progresses, Transport Scotland is committed to keeping local communities and road users informed and a series of public exhibitions are being held later this month and the beginning of July.

Published 11 Jun 2014 Tags