Costain CH2M replaces Kier on East Sussex highways

East Sussex County Council has selected Costain CH2M joint venture as its preferred bidder for its £300m highway services contract.

The new seven-year contract, starting on 1st May 2016, will replace the existing arrangement that has three separate contractors responsible for highways (Kier), traffic signals (Siemens) and street lighting (Colas).

Kier took over the highways contract in 2013 when it acquired May Gurney, the county’s contractor.

The newly-formed Costain CH2M joint venture will be responsible for maintaining the East Sussex highways network, including roads, pavements, drainage, street lights, traffic lights and structures. It will also deliver winter gritting and highway improvement schemes.

The council said that the new deal includes a fixed price for routine maintenance activities such as grass cutting and gritting for the life of the contract, giving greater certainty over the cost of highway services for the next seven years.

The council also said that it was putting in place a new management structure will be put in place, while the contract includes a number of incentives and penalties to ensure the best possible service is provided to the public.

Cllr Carl Maynard, East Sussex County Council lead member for transport and environment, said: “The new contract will bring everything from gritting to street lights under one provider, enabling us to provide a more unified, effective and efficient service. We were very impressed with the bid from Costain CH2M, who have a lot of experience with major infrastructure projects and highway maintenance and were able to offer a proposal which met all our needs and offered value for money for the taxpayer.