Main Roads Western Australia trials NEC

Main Roads Western Australia trials NEC

NEC has been successfully trialled for the first time in Western Australia. A new 16km stretch of the Great Northern Highway in the semiarid Wheatbelt region north of Perth is about to be finished using an NEC3 Engineering and Construction Contract (ECC) Option D (target contract with bill of quantities).

Client Main Roads Western Australia and its project delivery partner Arup-Jacobs joint venture decided to trial NEC on one of ten works packages on the A$375 million (£200 million), 218km second stage of the Great Northern Highway Muchea to Wubin Upgrade project.

The A$25 million (£14 million) Pithara section was let to a joint venture of Highway Construction and Albem Operations in March 2018. The NEC-procured section is scheduled for completion on 21 June 2019.

Scope of work

The Pithara works involved building 10.3km of new single carriageway next to the existing route, upgrading 5.7km of the route through Pithara town plus 1.5km of an adjoining road, improving junctions and providing new overtaking lanes and bus bays.

Main Roads contracts manager Andrew Ives says, ‘Following consultation with industry we decided trial a target-cost contract on at least one of our projects. We believe there might be potential advantages both to ourselves and our supply chain from adopting this type of contract.

‘After analysis of the various contract options from a commercial and technical perspective, we decided to trial the NEC3 ECC Option D on the Pithara section of Great Northern Highway upgrade. Given the success of the trial to date, we are now considering further use of NEC target-cost contracts on other projects in the near future.’

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