Exclusive: More than £2bn still to be spent under Highways England framework

Date: 07 Mar 2017

Highways England still has more than £2bn to spend on construction projects through its flagship Collaborative Delivery Framework, Construction News can reveal.

A freedom of information request revealed that only £2.72bn had so far been spent on the design and delivery of construction projects procured through the much-vaunted framework – some £2.28bn below its threshold.

Construction News reported last spring that the 17-contractor CDF – launched by Highways England’s predecessor the Highways Agency in 2014 – was expected to reach its £5bn OJEU limit by 2017.

Highways England last summer revealed plans to invite bids for a new £7bn framework in Q2 2017 to cover the next chunk of spending through the £15bn Roads Investment Strategy, which covers investment to 2020.

Highways England chief executive Jim O’Sullivan told Construction News last year he would like to expand the number of contractors it works with through the new framework.

Mr O’Sullivan also revealed to CN in November that the organisation was considering procuring major roads projects outside of the new framework and replacing mini-bids with a system of allocation based on the successful delivery of previous jobs.

It is understood Highways England does not believe the CDF will now reach its limit until 2019.

The organisation said it was still consulting with the industry over the best ways to procure future work and would launch a new framework ahead of CDF reaching its limit.

A Highways England spokesman said: “We have a good track record for delivering and are confident in our ability to meet the challenge that the £15bn Roads Investment Strategy presents.

“The CDF is a key part of how we deliver this significant step up in roads investment and provides a streamlined route for procuring capital works.

“We are assessing how we will procure the remaining projects in our delivery programme once the CDF reaches its threshold and are gathering the views of our stakeholders, supply chain and partners to help inform what future model(s) could look like.”

The FoI response revealed that Balfour Beatty, Carillion and Costain have been among the biggest winners from the CDF to date.

Credit: constructionnews.co.uk

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