The Role of the Maintenance Contractor in Road Maintenance and Operation
BARRETT R, WS Atkins, UK
In recent years there have been significant changes in the methods of procuring and delivering road maintenance services. These changes have arisen out of the need to ensure that the management and maintenance of the road network is performed both effecti
In recent years there have been significant changes in the methods of procuring and delivering road maintenance services. These changes have arisen out of the need to ensure that the management and maintenance of the road network is performed both effectively and efficiently. The trend in the last decade has been to establish distinct and separate organisational structures for the different functions of road owner, read manager and service delivery. Traditionally these read management and maintenance functions have been predominantly undertaken by the Public Sector utilising their in-house consultancy services and direct labour organisation. Within the last five years through open competition, the Private Sector has been allowed to compete for these services and perform the role of manager or service provider.
The network of roads throughout England has developed into a recognisable hierarchy based on a classification reflecting their relative importance. For simplicity the roads can be divided into the following two principal classifications:
* Motorways and trunk roads that form the strategic national road network providing routes for long distance travel. The Highways Agency, on behalf of central government, is responsible for these roads.
* Regional and local (County) roads which are the responsibility of local highway authorities.
This paper concentrates on the current arrangements adopted by the Highways Agency for the management and maintenance of the motorways and trunk roads in England. The roles and responsibilities of the various parties are explained and recent developments discussed.
It is essential for any industry to strive for continual improvement and this paper concludes with a summary of the benefits of the current arrangements and an outline of the future procurement options being considered by the Highways Agency.
Association for European Transport