A 15-year contract worth more than £300m is up for grabs on the strategic road network in the East Midlands, Highways England has announced.
Following a number of set backs earlier this year the tender for the Area 7 maintenance and response contract has been published and marks a tactical change for Highways England.
The contract is set to be the first to operate under a new set of arrangements in the region, with Highways England ‘bringing key functions in-house to take direct control of its road network’.
Jenny Moten, programme director for Area 7 future development, said: ‘This is significant change in the way we work in the East Midlands. For the first time we will be taking control of our roads, directly engaging suppliers to help drive down cost and waste, and providing the best possible value for money for taxpayers. This new way of working will help us develop a successful, long-term relationship with the successful contractor for up to 15 years.’
The news came after officials at the strategic road authority revealed that there had been concerns about the stage 1 finance evaluation in the previous tendering process.
This new contract is expected to be the first of four in the region released over the next three months, with further contracts for design, capital works and specialist services set to be tendered.
All of them are set to begin on 1 July 2016, once the current Managing Agent Contract with Aone+ has expired.
In preparation for the new set up Highways England is looking to boost its in-house capability through the recruitment of new staff, and revealed a ‘significant number’ are expected to transfer from Aone+.
The tender is published here
Surveyor's Highway Management conference will take place on September 23rd and 24th in Manchester. To register go to: www.highway.surveyorevents.com