Construction will start this week on the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route (AWPT) after Scottish Transport Minister Keith Brown announced that an £8M pre-start works agreement had been signed.
This will enable preferred bidder Connect Roads to undertake further design work, and to begin fencing, environment surveys, and ground investigations ahead of the main works contract.
Connect, a consortium comprising Balfour Beatty, Carillion, and Galliford Try, was selected as preferred bidder for the £745M scheme in June (see route map below).
Brown said: “Today, we can announce that the preferred bidder will be on site from this week actively preparing for the main works. This pre-start works agreement further reinforces our commitment to the project and will complement the advance works already undertaken. This will ensure that the preferred bidder will be in an advanced position after contract award, which is expected later this year.”
Alan Gibson, bid director at Connect Roads, added: “The pre-start works agreement will ensure that we get the best possible start to the main construction works later this year. This will build on the advance works programme which has made significant progress over a vast area in very little time.
“We are working closely with Transport Scotland, Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire Councils to reach financial close on the main DBFO contract, which will enable full works to commence on this strategically important project for the north east.”
The AWPT will create an alternative route from north to south Aberdeen, bypassing the city. Currently the only dual carriageway route from north to south is through the city itself, along the original 1930s bypass, Anderson Drive, which is unsuitable for heavy goods vehicles as they cannot cross the Bridge of Dee at its South end.
The bypass was first proposed in 1952, and in 2012 the project was finally approved. Construction is scheduled to finish in 2018.
The project also includes an upgrade of the A90 between Balmedie and Tipperty, further north, to dual carriageway.