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Industry day highlights significant interest in AWPR project

09/01/13

Transport Scotland has hosted an Industry Day to inform potential contractors and funders of the opportunities the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route/Balmedie-Tipperty project offers their businesses.

The project is a key driver for major economic growth and is expected to lead to the creation of 14,200 jobs in the North-east, bringing a boost of 6billion to the local economy over the next 30 years.

The Contract Notice in the OJEU will be published next week, formally inviting expressions of interest from companies interested in bidding for this significant contract. Procurement as a single construction project under one Non-Profit Distribution (NPD) contract ensures best value for money for the public purse.

Transport Minister Keith Brown, who addressed some 150 delegates from over 60 organisations at the Industry Day, said: "After many years of delay this essential project has gathered significant pace since the Supreme Court dismissed the appeal against the AWPR – with the immediate publication of the PIN followed by commencement of supplementary ground investigation works and now this Industry Day.

"Ensuring that we deliver this long-awaited project for the north-east of Scotland through investment in the AWPR alongside our partners, Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire councils, is something we are committed to doing and I am very pleased to have been able to address major organisations from Scotland, the rest of the UK and across Europe today.

"Over the next three decades, the project is expected to bring in an additional 6billion to the local economy and create around 14,000 new jobs. The major works phase will deliver a huge uplift in employment opportunities across the construction sector and associated disciplines.

"The AWPR/ Balmedie-Tipperty project will improve journey times, reduce congestion and help open up wider markets for the regionally and nationally important economy of the north-east delivering benefits of both local and national importance.

"This Government has taken forward the largest investment ever in the country's transport infrastructure, completing a number of vital projects on time and on budget."

Aberdeen City Council Leader Councillor Barney Crockett, said: "The presence here today in Aberdeen of representatives from some of the world's leading construction companies really drives home the true scale, significance and economic importance of the AWPR/Balmedie-Tipperty project to the North-east and the rest of Scotland.

"After years of delays we are now making rapid progress towards delivering this key piece of transport infrastructure which will boost jobs and business in the city and far beyond."

Leader of Aberdeenshire Council Councillor Jim Gifford said: "This Industry Day provides a major showcase for the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route/Balmedie-Tipperty project and encourages consortiums and construction firms from across the world to bid for the work.

"This will be one of the largest construction projects in the UK and Europe in the next few years, stimulating the economy and providing local jobs. I am keen to demonstrate our total commitment for this project and enthusiasm for appointing the right team to develop this important piece of infrastructure."

Tom Smith, Chairman of ACSEF (Aberdeen City and Shire Economic Future), said: "It is no surprise that there is significant interest from the construction sector across the UK and Europe for what is one of the largest infrastructure projects being undertaken in Scotland in recent years.

"Employment opportunities will flow not only from the construction process but the economic growth forecast on completion of the project. This is fantastic news for a region which continues to maintain its place as one of the best-performing in the country. The Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route/Balmedie Tipperty project will help deliver not only a modern transport system bringing reduced journey times, but a major boost to the local, regional and national economies – modernising infrastructure to ensure the north-east of Scotland fulfils its strategic promise over the next 30 years and beyond."

Bob Collier, Chief Executive of Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce, commented: "The AWPR / Balmedie-Tipperty project is a significant project for the region. Our members will be pleased to see preparations well under way for the implementation phase with contractors from across Scotland, the UK and Europe in Aberdeen to learn more as part of the tendering process."

The indicative timetable for the combined project is:
• January 9, 2013 - Hold industry day to discuss tenders
• Early 2013 - Publish Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) notice
• Spring 2013 - Issue invitation to tender
• Autumn 2014 - Award contract/commence works
• Spring 2018 – Completion

Preparatory work is already under way along the AWPR route, including archaeological and environmental surveys, and supplementary ground investigation works. Ground investigation work for the Balmedie to Tipperty scheme is also progressing.

Further information on the AWPR / Balmedie-Tipperty project is available by visiting: www.awpr.co.uk