First multi-million pound A9 Dualling design contract awarded
The first of three large design contracts for the ambitious A9 Dualling programme, each valued at £40-£60 million, has been awarded.
Transport Scotland today announced the intention to award the contract for dualling over 43 km of the stretch of the A9 between Glengarry and Dalraddy to CH2MHill/Fairhurst.
Subject to the mandatory standstill period the joint venture design consultancy will start work on the middle section of the route next month.
Transport Minister Keith Brown said:
“The A9 Dualling programme is the most expensive transport project in Scotland’s history and presents some of the most challenging work ever witnessed.
“The appointment of the first design consultancy for this mammoth project marks another significant milestone in this Government’s commitment to the project – the first Government to commit to dual this vital route between Perth and Inverness.
“As well as delivering faster and more reliable journey times and road safety improvements when complete, the design work offers the prospect of steady work for many years ahead for the three successful contractors.
“There will also be many opportunities for small and medium enterprises through sub-consultancy work and the winning bidder has also committed to providing 35 full time roles and 28 summer placement opportunities for apprentices, work experience students and graduates, bringing much-needed opportunities for young people to gain experience working on this vital project linking central Scotland to the Highlands and Islands.”
“A vital part of the dualling work is engaging with the local communities who may be affected by the works. As well as the ongoing series of consultations including public exhibitions to take place over the next few months, it is also important that we engage with schools along the route.
“An Education Liaison Officer is an essential part of the contract for the three successful consultancies and will work with schools to offer opportunities for lesson plans and input to the Curriculum for Excellence as well as site visits, talks and employment skills training.
“So while progressing the design work, we are also engaging with road users and anyone affected by the work in the local communities, including, local businesses, landowners and schools.”
The Transport Minister also announced that subject to the mandatory standstill period, Transport Scotland will award the ground investigation contract for the 8 km Birnam to Tay Crossing section to Soil Engineering.
Work is expected to begin next month and last for six months.
Mr Brown added:
“Last month, we announced that the dualling programme would comprise 12 sections to be dualled by 2025 with three sections expected to be shovel ready in 2017, subject to completion of required statutory procedures.
“There is no let-up in the work going on and these important ground investigations will give us the detailed information needed to progress the draft Orders for the difficult Birnam to Tay Crossing section, expected to be published in 2015.
“Like much of the route, this section is very constrained and we are working to minimise any impacts to properties, the railway and the environment.”
The three design contracts for the A9 Dualling programme, to be let by the end of 2014, will cover:
Pass of Birnam to Glen Garry
Glen Garry to Dalraddy
Dalraddy to Inverness
For more details of the A9 Dualling programme and the planned series of public exhibitions starting at the end of May 2014 visit: http://www.transportscotland.gov.uk/road/projects/a9