Cambridgeshire County Council’s decision to go public over its dispute with guided busway contractor Bam Nuttall this week yielded immediate results with senior executives stepping in to resolve the issues.
Bam Nuttall’s new chief executive Stephen Fox is to work with the council’s chief executive Mark Lloyd to personally oversee efforts to put right problems that have contributed to severe delays.
Crisis talks were held at high level between both parties after the council last week released a report outlining disagreements over what problems could be classed as defects.
The council had said it wanted the issues resolved before it accepted handover of the scheme for fear that it would be left with excessive maintenance costs.
“Cambridgeshire County Council and Bam Nuttall have agreed that these areas need to be raised because of flood storage issues in the flood plain.”
“Actions have been agreed by both parties, commencing with early technical meetings this week, which if carried through, should lead to the resolution of the issues,” said a joint statement from Bam Nuttall and the council.
Among the issues are a maintenance track that is excessively flooding.
“Cambridgeshire County Council and Bam Nuttall have agreed that these areas need to be raised, a process that will require liaison with the Environment Agency because of flood storage issues in the flood plain.
“The good news is that any work on this could be carried out whilst the busway is operational, so the work, which needs drier conditions, will not prevent the busway opening.”
Other issues are an unsealed expansion joint on the River Great Ouse Viaduct and drainage issues at the St Ives Park and Ride site because of its gradient.
The statement also said that, if the new approach works well, both parties hope to agree a revised opening date next month. The scheme had originally been scheduled to open in January 2009.