Four companies bid for county council highways contract

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FOUR companies have cleared the first hurdle in a bid to secure a £150m highways contract with Nottinghamshire County Council. The Council is halfway through tendering the contract which includes the out-sourcing of several areas of work.

Eight companies initially tendered for the contract during the first round of bidding. The four remaining companies are May Gurney, Nexus, Ringway and Tarmac.

The modern, cost-based contract is expected to be awarded by the end of the year and will be with a single provider for up to ten years. It will enable the Council to drive further efficiency savings from the delivery of its highway services.

The Council is encouraging the contractors to use local labour and a local supply chain. Regular bench-marking with other councils in the region via the Midland Highway Alliance will ensure value for money is maintained.

Many of the services included in the contract are those already largely or completely delivered by external contractors including resurfacing, surface dressing, earthworks, fencing and land reclamation.

Some highway services currently delivered in-house but for which delivery can be planned will also be included in the new contract. These services will require the TUPE transfer of some staff – around 25 in total – from the County Council to the new contractor and include road markings and studs, street lighting column replacement and gully emptying.

Not included in the new contract are reactive highways services including pot hole and drainage repairs, faulty street lights, gritting and snow clearing, grass cutting and tree maintenance which will all continue to be delivered by the County Council’s own workforce directly.

The council will also continue to use its own multi-skilled highways operations teams to deliver most of the highway improvements such as the recently completed A60 Forest Lane traffic signal junction.