Cabinet approves new contract for highways maintenance in Somerset

A new contract for highways maintenance in Somerset will be awarded to Skanska Construction UK Ltd, following a decision made today by Somerset County Council’s Cabinet.

The contract will initially run from 1 April 2017 until 31 March 2024, with the option to extend for a further three years based on performance.

As part of the winning bid, Skanska will be required to identify further savings, follow industry best-practice, support local communities, and reduce the number of potholes over the life of the contract. They will also be expected to keep 85% of supply chain spend in the local economy.

The decision follows an extensive procurement process which was carried out jointly with Devon and Plymouth Councils to ensure competitiveness and to put in place opportunities for future joint working once contracts are in place.

Cllr David Fothergill, Somerset County Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways, said: “This is a hugely important contract covering many essential services – from proactive resurfacing and gritting, to reactive work like fixing safety defects and responding to out of hours emergencies.

“Our key objectives were to secure value for money without compromising on quality. I’m pleased we have been able to team up effectively with our colleagues at Devon and Plymouth to secure the best possible deal for tax payers in Somerset.”

Although the procurement process was joint, Devon County Council and Plymouth City Council will each have their own contract. The authorities and their contractors will work together through the lifetime of the contracts to continually improve the cost effectiveness of their highway services. Devon has also agreed to appoint Skanska as its new contractor, while Plymouth City Council awarded its contract to South West Highways Ltd.

The total combined value of the contract is limited to £1.2bn over 10 years between the three authorities. For Somerset, the exact spend each year will vary depending on how much work is ordered and carried out.

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