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Highways Agency halts asset maintenance tenders

The Highways Agency has suspended procurement for the latest tranche of it roads maintenance contracts, it revealed yesterday.

In a statement the Agency said its decision to abandon Asset Support Contracts (ASCs) for areas 4 and 12 had “not been taken lightly” but that it wanted to “give further consideration to what the successful contractor will be required to deliver under the terms of the contract”.

Invitations to tender (ITTs) had been issued in December last year to Amey, Aone+, an Atkins Skanska joint venture (JV), a Balfour Beatty Mott MacDonald JV, Carillion and Mouchel-owned EM Highway Services for Area 4; and Amey, Aone+, the Atkins Skanska JV, Carillion and EM Highway Services again made the shortlist for Area 12 joined by a Bam URS joint venture.

“The Agency is committed to ensuring that any contract we award is able to deliver against the backdrop of significant investment in England’s strategic road network,” said a spokesperson.

“The decision to discontinue the existing procurement and issue a revised ITT has not been taken lightly; ASCs are a key part of the Agency’s ability to successfully deliver its objectives. The Agency has decided to discontinue the procurement following stage 1 finance evaluation due to concern arising from elements of the pricing of the bids that in the view of the Agency will not support the delivery of the contract over the next five years.  By deciding to return to ITT it will give all tenderers and the Agency the opportunity to align both contract documents and return tenders to meet the challenge of successfully delivering the future needs of the Agency and the successful delivery of maintenance and improvements required between now and 2020.”

Area 4 covers the motorways and key trunk roads in Kent, Sussex and some small areas of Surrey and Hampshire and Area 12 covers Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire,

A new ITT will be issued in the first quarter of 2015, the Agency added.

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