Cumbria County Council has launched the competitive procurement process to identify a contractor to design and build the new Carlisle Southern Link Road (CSLR).
The process, which began last week (Wednesday 12 August), signifies an important step forward in the project with the intention to award a contract in January 2021. The winning bidder will be responsible for the design and construction of the 8km road connecting Junction 42 of the M6 with the A595 at Newby West.
This would see work starting on site in 2022 and completion in 2024. The delivery of the road will unlock the 10,000 new homes proposed for St Cuthbert’s Garden Village.
The Council will follow a 2 Stage Restricted OJEU procurement process. This commenced with the issue of a Pre-Qualification Questionnaire last week (Friday 14 August), which is used to identify a short-list of contractors suitable to undertake the works. The Council aims to work collaboratively with a high performing contractor, their supply chain and stakeholders to successfully realise the aims of this challenging and rewarding project enabling delivery of significant social and economic benefits for the local area.
Cumbria County Council’s Development, Control and Regulation Committee is due to determine the planning application for the road in October. The proposals include four new roundabouts, four new road bridges, and an extensive combined cycleway/footway on the northern side of the road with four new shared-use overbridges for cyclists and pedestrians.
The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) announced funding towards the scheme in February 2019, on 23 June 2020 the County Council’s Cabinet agreed to enter in to the funding agreement for £134m. In addition, Cumbria County Council and Carlisle City Council have committed to make contributions of £5m each, which will be sourced from developer contributions as homes are built. The full funding for the scheme is £144m.
Councillor Keith Little, Cumbria County Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport said:
“This is a significant milestone moment in the project and brings us one step closer towards creating this new strategic road. This road is vital not only to Carlisle City Council’s Garden Village project, but for the wider economic benefits it brings to our county. It will help create jobs, attract businesses to invest and is key to providing housing and economic growth.”
To read more about the CSLR please go to cumbria.gov.uk/cslr