Britain’s biggest road project, the A14, a joint venture between Skanska, Costain and Balfour Beatty, is set to open to drivers more than half a year early, Highways England announced today (Thursday 6 February).
The £1.5 billion scheme to improve journeys between the East of England and the Midlands was originally planned to open to traffic by the end of 2020.
Today our client, Highways England said it plans to open the A14 improvement ahead of schedule, this spring.
The good news follows the recent December opening of a part of the 21-mile scheme – a new 12-mile bypass south of Huntingdon – a whole year early. Already, the bypass has been used to make more than five million journeys.
Highways England chief executive 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.
“Also, I would like to thank road users, residents and stakeholders for their patience and support during our work. This road is not just a piece of national infrastructure - it brings benefits to the region and local towns and communities too.”
Glennan Blackmore, highways sector director, Skanska 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.”
Work on the project began in November 2016, and has employed around 13,000 people in total, with up to 2,500 working on site during the project’s peak who have been working hard to deliver an early opening for traffic on the new A14.
The A14 has changed the shape of infrastructure with archaeological, digital and sustainable development.