Skanska, Costain and Balfour Beatty JV completes A14 road in UK

WCN Editorial Team 7 Feb 2020 EUROPE TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE

The joint venture (JV) of Skanska, Costain and Balfour Beatty had completed the construction of the A14 project, six months early.

The £1.5bn scheme, which will improve the journey between the East of England and the Midlands, was originally planned to be open for traffic by the end of 2020. As the project was completed early, Highways England plans to open the A14 improvement this spring.

The news follows last December’s opening of a part of the 21-mile scheme, a new 12-mile bypass south of Huntingdon, a whole year early. The bypass had already been used for more than five million journeys.

Work on the A14 project started in November 2016, employing nearly 13,000 in total, with up to 2,500 working onsite during the project’s peak.

Skanska highways sector director Glennan Blackmore said: “The A14 opening early is a fantastic testament to the one team integrated project with the client and partners, Costain and Balfour Beatty. The delivery team’s collaborative approach is industry-changing.

“With all partners truly integrating, it demonstrates the success that can be achieved. We are proud that we will leave a sustainable legacy, which will support economic growth and bring communities together.” 

The A14 project includes an upgrade between Swavesey and Milton, and a new local access road, the A1307, running parallel to it between Cambridge and Godmanchester. Nearly 24 miles of new routes for cyclists, walkers and horse riders have been built under the scheme.

The spring opening marks the end of permanent roadworks and reduced speed limits on the new A14. But, the project team still needs to carry out several activities of completion such as landscaping, installing some of the new technology, and work in the verges. The works will be completed using temporary overnight closures or off-peak daytime lane closures, Highways England stated.

Highways England expects to seek planning consent later this year, for proposals for new dual carriageway A428, connecting Caxton Gibbet and the Black Cat junction with the A1 in Bedfordshire, and £300m for improving three junctions and upgrading three stretches of the A47 to dual carriageway between Peterborough and Great Yarmouth.

Highways England CEO Jim O’Sullivan said: “The A14 is a vital route used by 85,000 drivers every day and including more than 21,000 hauliers transporting essential goods around the country. Opening this scheme more than six months early and on budget shows what the UK construction industry can achieve working with Highways England on the Strategic Road Network. I would like to thank them for their focus on our joint success and for their one team approach.”

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Image: A14 motorway in Britain. (Credit: Skanska UK Plc.)

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