New, multi-million-pound highway maintenance contracts started in West Sussex just nine days after lockdown began.
Since April 1, and despite the extra challenges Covid-19 presents, Balfour Beatty Living Places has been providing core maintenance services, such as carriageway repairs and emergency works, with Drainline Southern providing drainage cleansing and Grasstex grass cutting and hedge maintenance.
In fact, in the first three months of the new contracts:
- Balfour Beatty Living Places has carried out more than 9,100 pothole/defect repairs and emergency jobs on the highway
- Drainline Southern is in the process of emptying thousands of gullies and soakaways across the county as part of the first-year programme of works. It is also working closely with officers to react to drainage issues that may arise
- Grasstex has completed three urban grass cutting rounds, plus the first rural grass cut and first twitten cut across the county. It is also supporting with Covid-related works to ensure the public can socially distance when using footways and cyclepaths.
- The five-year contracts have options to extend to a maximum of ten years. If they are all extended to the maximum, they could be worth in excess of £200million, dependent upon funding from central Government over that time.
Cllr Roger Elkins, cabinet member for highways and infrastructure, said: “We know how important the highway network is to both West Sussex residents and visitors to the county. We’re looking forward to developing our partnerships to deliver the best-possible highway maintenance service.”
Balfour Beatty Living Places contract manager Lloyd Allen said: “We are delighted to be supporting our partner, West Sussex County Council, with maintenance works throughout the county. Our delivery of more than 9,100 pothole/defect repairs and emergency jobs during lockdown, whilst strictly adhering to our Covid-19 site operating procedures, is testament to the team’s efficiency and expertise in maintaining highways across West Sussex.”
Tristan Miles, managing director of Drainline Southern, added: “We are delighted to be working with West Sussex County Council.
“It is very encouraging to see small and medium-sized enterprises, such as ours, being engaged directly. We are looking forward to bringing some new, innovative and cost-saving ideas to the council for many years to come and working collaboratively with the local authorities and residents.”
Grasstex Director Richard Conway said: “We are very pleased to be working in partnership with West Sussex County Council, helping them deliver a cost-effective service in the coming years.”