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Winners Named for £4.5bn Smart Motorway

Highways England have announced the winners of its future smart motorway programme, which is worth up to £4.5 billion.

The three winning contractor partners are Costain, which has picked up the Northern regions, while BAM Nuttall/Morgan Sindall JV has been appointed to the Midlands region, and Balfour Beatty has been awarded the Southern area.

The framework, which is valid for 10 years, will see the SMP Alliance deliver a key element of the Government’s second Road Investment Strategy, and will have a greater emphasis on technology and increased efficiency.

This in an important win for Morgan Sindall, which had failed to secure a place on Highways England’s other major delivery frameworks and had risked dropping out of highways.

Highways England has also announced that Fluor has secured the smart motorway production management partner role to lead and coordinate the Alliance partners. Consultants WSP UK and Jacobs Engineering UK will be design partners for the Alliance from the initial concept right up until closeout.

In early summer 2020, the alliance will start its two-week initiation phase. During this mobilisation phase, the alliance and the partners will come together, and will establish how they will all best work together.

A Highways England spokesperson said: “This announcement marks the start of a pioneering new approach to how Highways England does business.

“This framework will enable the industry to put greater emphasis on the standardised design, so where there are common elements across the programme, such as gantries and variable message signs, they can be produced and can be ordered ‘off the shelf.

“By establishing this building block approach to road building, the intention is to transform productivity by increased efficiencies and decreased overall costs.”

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