Highways England has launched a new £9 billion NEC4-based framework for delivery of major motorway and A-road projects in England.
The new ‘regional delivery partnership’ announced in January 2018 will replace its £5 billion NEC3-based ‘collaborative delivery framework’. This five-year framework was launched in November 2014 but will reach its headline value this year.
Standard NEC4 contracts
Regional delivery integration partners will be appointed later this year under the first £8.7 billion phase of the new framework to deliver eight lots of schemes such as conventional road widening and junction improvements. All contracts will be let under a standard NEC4 Engineering and Construction Contract (ECC). Highways England is a platinum member of the NEC Users’ Group and a highly experienced user of NEC contracts.
A second £0.3 billion phase of the framework will be launched this autumn for development of route options using technical advisers appointed under NEC4 contracts. A new and separate procurement process will be launched at the end of the year for delivery of the smart motorways programme.
Emphasis on collaboration
Procurement director Sharon Cuff said, ‘The new contract model puts collaboration at the heart of the relationships necessary to deliver our road investment strategy at the scale and pace required, and I urge all of the supply chain to engage’.
She added she wanted Highways England to be the ‘client of choice’ in the sector and recognised the important role the supply chain played in helping to shape and innovate its procurement models.
Scape framework winners
In addition to Highways England’s announcement, leading UK public-sector construction framework operator Scape Group has just appointed contractors for its new £1.1 billion, four-year regional construction framework based on NEC4. Designed for projects up to £5 million in the Midlands and eastern England, all contracts will be let from this month onwards under NEC4 ECC or NEC4 Engineering and Construction Short Contracts (ECSC).
The winning bidders for the 11 value-based lots were Morgan Sindall (£1–5 million); Ashe Construction, Clegg Construction, Fortem and GF Tomlinson (£0.5–2.5 million); and RG Carter Building, Conamar Building Services, Jeakins Weir, John Graham Holdings, Lindum Group and Seddon Construction (up to £0.75 million).