4th Generation Term Contract for the Management and Maintenance of the Scottish Trunk Road Network – North East Unit

4th Generation Term Contract for the Management and Maintenance of the Scottish Trunk Road Network – North East Unit
4th Generation Term Contract for the Management and Maintenance of the Scottish Trunk Road Network – North East Unit

CEEQUAL Term Contract – Whole Team Award

2015/16: 73.6% 
Version 5, October 2017 | Scotland, UK

Client: Transport Scotland
Contractor: BEAR Scotland

Assessment Team: Craig Thom – BEAR Scotland

Contract summary

The trunk road network which connects Scotland’s cities, towns, airports and ports is overseen by Transport Scotland. BEAR Scotland have maintained the Trunk Road network in the North East Unit since 2001 and were awarded the 4G contract in 2014. With a total length of 594 km, the North East Unit extends from Halbeath in Fife up to Fraserburgh and across to Inverness.

Transport Scotland as an Executive Agency help the Scottish Government meet the objectives they set for a more sustainable future. This includes encouraging the Trunk Road Operating companies to make sure they work as closely as possible with the communities they serve, maximising community benefits, and encouraging innovation. This environment is fostered through the requirements set out in the 4th generation contract but also and perhaps more importantly through active partnership between the wider team, client and contractor. Through this close working relationship, BEAR Scotland and Transport Scotland are able to deliver the service that the communities of the north of Scotland expect. This partnership helps to deliver better value for money and supports the trunk road networks ability to adapt to future challenges.

This 4th Generation term contract has been built on good practice across the industry and has evolved and been refined during the previous generations of the contract. Currently in the 4th generation Operating Companies were encouraged to undertake a CEEQUAL Term Contract Assessment and in 2016 BEAR Scotland committed to commence the CEEQUAL process, pursuing a Whole Team Award in conjunction with Transport Scotland.

North East Unit Map

Services being provided by BEAR Scotland under the term contract include road and bridge maintenance, minor improvements, incident management and support, lighting the network and minimising the risk of landslides.
Roads Planned MaintenanceOn completion of the scoping out process the following work types were considered in detail during the CEEQUAL assessment in the North East Unit (using ‘The Assessment Manual for Term Contracts: Maintenance’ manual):

  • Drainage Maintenance
  • Road lighting
  • Contract Facilities

The following sections outline examples of best practice with regards to sustainability identified during the initial verification assessment period.

Contract management

Management system audits

Schedule 5 Part 8 and the 4G procurement strategy and project execution plan identified from the outset that the sustainable road maintenance, carbon emission reduction and environmental protection were the key aims of the 4G contracts based on the Scottish Governments targets. Schedule 5 Part 8 of the contract outlines the sustainable development based contract strategy. BEAR Scotland comply with this and are subjected to regular audits to check compliance. In addition to this The 4G North East Trunk Road Network is subject to a number of environmental management system audits from the Performance Audit Group who are employed by Transport Scotland as well as LRQA, an external certification body. A good level of performance was achieved in all North East audits with continuous improvement being demonstrated in the audit reports and BEAR Scotland maintaining certification to the ISO 14001 standard.

Energy saving opportunities scheme (ESOS)

BEAR Scotland submitted its ESOS notification to the Environment Agency on 11th

Perth Depot Salt Barn Lighting Upgrades

November 2015 in advance of the 5th December 2015 deadline. The process involved a significant amount of work and the findings were presented to the senior management team for consideration. A total of 67 energy saving opportunities were identified as a result of the process with 45 identified for properties and 22 energy saving opportunities identified for plant/fleet.

Lighting improvements implemented during the CEEQUAL initial verification assessment period have produced a total saving of approximately 34507 kWh in annual energy consumption, translating to an approximate financial saving of £5176 based on the energy tariff paid during the reporting period and a carbon saving of 15.94 tonnes of CO2e. The Senior Management team are currently looking through the energy saving opportunities identified during the ESOS compliance process and will create an action plan to determine what measures they plan to progress with. LED lighting options will always be considered for all future lighting replacements across the business.

Electric vehicle charging infrastructure

Perth Depot Salt Barn Lighting Upgrades

Throughout the initial verification assessment period two electric vehicle recharging points were installed at the Perth Head Office. The charge points are available for all BEAR Scotland and client employees to use and the installation supports BEAR Scotland’s aim of promoting the use of sustainable transport on the Trunk Road network.

Relations with the local community

BEAR Scotland is keen to support local communities and promote community benefits that support Transport Scotland in delivering the

Staff who worked to improve access to the scout hall

objectives stated in the Scottish Government’s Scotland’s Transport Future and the UK Government’s Get Britain Working Policies. Throughout the initial verification assessment period BEAR Scotland carried out a number of community initiatives and engagement projects with schools, colleges and universities as well as developing young people within the Unit in accordance with the Scottish Government’s Creating Opportunities Together document.

Examples of this work include fundraising events for charities including Motor Neuron Disease Scotland and Chest Heart and Stroke Scotland, working with a local scout group to make access and lighting improvements to their scout hall and offering work placements through Barnardo’s. 

Teams who competed in the charity 5 a side football event for MND Scotland

Drainage maintenance

A £2 million improvement programme was undertaken on the A95 at Aberlour Main Street in May 2015. The programme involved carriageway reconstruction over a 1.1 km length of the A95 Aberlour Main Street and the implementation of a drainage system compliant with the SUDS guidelines (CIRIA 2000) along the length of the scheme. The drainage system comprised the installation of 1.1 km of a new 0.6 m diameter carrier drain (laid a depth of 1.5 m to 2.4 m) and installation of new storm water treatment systems including two Downstream Defenders and eight Up-Flo Filters. Minor works involved in the scheme included some kerbing and footways. The drainage design incorporated advice from the Scottish Government’s Surface Water Management Planning Guidance (2013) and specified for long-term flood resilience and adaptation. The scheme was situated within two sensitive areas (River Spey Special Area of Conservation -Code 8365 and Site of Special Scientific Interest -Code 1699) and eight listed buildings were in proximity to the works.

Environmental mitigation measures for the scheme included the installation of a sediment management system between the works and Aberlour Burn which included the bunding of gullies in proximity to work activities. Site personnel were made aware of the location of listed buildings and vehicles and plant were not permitted to park or materials to be stored on the footpath separating the listed buildings from the works.

The new storm water drainage system disconnected the existing combined drainage system from the River Spey which will in turn reduce Combined Sewer Overflow spills and thus reduce pollution of the River Spey. In addition, the new storm water drainage system includes a minimum of two levels of treatment, these being two Downstream Defenders (an advanced hydrodynamic separator) and eight Up-Flo Filters (a modular fluidised bed filter designed to remove very fine particles to approximately 20 micron). Installation of these features will ensure storm water quality exceeds current discharge standards.

Independent tests on installed Downstream Defender units show that at design flow it will remove in excess of 80% Total Suspended Solids (TSS), 66% hydrocarbons, 9% total Phosphorus, 27% total Nitrogen and 52% Heavy Metals.

Independent tests on installed Up-Flo Filter units show that at design flow it will remove in excess of 90% TSS, 92% hydrocarbons, 65% total Phosphorus, 44% total Nitrogen and 82% Heavy Metals.

The resurfaced high street will deliver a long term reduction in the traffic noise experienced by those living next to the A95. In order to ensure that noise disruption to local residents was kept to a minimum throughout the project, works were scheduled to be carried out during the daytime.

Extensive consultation with key stakeholders including SEPA and Scottish Natural Heritage was undertaken in advance of the scheme. The design was heavily influenced by potential environmental and social implications including the position of the drainage outlets and the phasing of the works to ensure that the impacts of the local residents and businesses was kept to a minimum. Weekly meetings were held with local residents throughout the scheme to discuss progress and any arising issues with regular press releases and Twitter updates issued as the scheme progressed.

Innovative solutions for nuisance mitigation utilised throughout the scheme included the movement of the surface water drainage line from the Trunk Road carriageway line to the car parking layby, therefore reducing the level of noise generated by vehicles running over the manholes.

Measures to improve the level of performance for non-motorised users were incorporated into the works through the installation of cross-footpath gutter downpipes to remove ice from the footpath in winter which previously caused issues for local residents.

 

Simon moos

BEAR Scotland have invested in two sets of Simon Moos dewatering plant which operate between four sites across the business (Corpach and Kingussie, Cunmont and Stirlinghill). The treatment process involves the use of polymer to cause flocculation of the contaminants present in the gully waste, leaving behind dewatered sludge which can be used for landfill topping alongside clean water which can be used again in the gully tankers, as well as vehicle washing. In addition to this the system also allows for a reduction in transport related carbon emissions as the gully tankers have less distance to travel back to the strategically positioned depots.

Simon Moos Process Overview

Road lighting

LED refurbishment works were undertaken on a number of North East roads throughout the Initial Verification Assessment period including the A9, A90 and M90 with approximately 300 LED lanterns being installed in place of standard road lanterns throughout the period.

LED lanterns have a number of benefits including:

  • Reduced energy consumption with an energy saving potential of 40% compared to high pressure sodium lanterns.
  • A long and predictable lifetime, reducing maintenance requirements;
  • They do not contain harmful substances such as mercury; and
  • Improved light levels which improves safety and enhances use ability for vulnerable members of the community.

A whole life costing exercise was undertaken in advance of the LED refurbishment program which compared the use of high pressure sodium lanterns against LED’s which justifies the cost and energy savings.

Opportunities for renewable/low carbon/zero-carbon energy

Throughout the initial verification assessment period solar powered street lighting furniture was rolled out on the network. This technology was brought to attention at lighting professionals seminars and allows the use of renewable energy to power street lighting furniture on the network. The technology uses solar power to trickle charge units powering 12 volt batteries to illuminate internal LED’s thus eliminating the requirement for mains power. The use of LED’s in this technology produces savings on maintenance and bulk lamp change. This technology is approved by the Department of Transport and can therefore be used on the Trunk Road Network.

A total of 95 solar powered bollards were installed on the North East network during the Initial Verification Assessment period. This resulted in an approximate saving of 12188 kWh which is now generated from solar power. This was approximately 23% of the total bollard kWh consumption in the Initial Verification Assessment period.

 

Roads planned maintenance

Environmental/sustainability assessment scoring matrix

The Transport Scotland’s annual process for roads structural maintenance includes an environmental/sustainability assessment scoring matrix which is used in the Roads Structural Maintenance value for money programming process. This ensures that key environmental and social criteria are considered during this process and factored in to the programming of schemes each year.

Environmental/Sustainability Assessment Scoring Matrix

M90 maintenance works

As part of the phased roads structural maintenance schemes on the M90 a reduced treatment strategy was selected rather than complete reconstruction. This reduced costs which allowed more work to be undertaken. The chosen treatment method involves the use of crack and seat. Crack and Seat is a technique where an existing concrete slab is cracked at controlled centres to create discrete mini slabs. These slabs are then rolled with a 10 or 20 tonne pneumatic tyred roller to seat them into the existing granular base. This creates a sound foundation for a flexible overlay preventing reflective cracking of the new surface. By Cracking & Seating the existing concrete bound mixture the requirement to remove the full depth of the pavement was avoided, thereby reducing the quantity of virgin material used in the operation. This also has the additional benefit of reducing transport associated emissions with less material being transported to site.

The use of this treatment method allows the work to be undertaken over a relatively short space of time in comparison to other treatment methods, therefore reducing the time spent on site and associated social disruption. The new pavement surface has a smoother running surface compared to the previous concrete surface which reduces the noise generated by vehicles using the road, reducing disruption to the local residents.

 TS2010 (SMA Mix)

TS2010 (Stone Mastic Asphalt Mix) was the main material used in roads planned maintenance schemes undertaken during the Initial Verification Assessment Period. TS2010 has the following benefits:

  • Superior durability;
  • Lower noise levels;
  • Good skid resistance;
  • Decreased lifetime costs;
  • Thin layer application;
  • Excellent ride quality;
  • Reduced use of expensive imported aggregates;
  • Increased use of a wider range of sustainable aggregate sources.

Utilising this material allows the mitigation of noise impacts on residential receptors during the operation of the road.

Energy and carbon emission reduction

During the initial verification assessment period a road traffic safety scheme was undertaken at Craigend junction on the M90. The scheme involved the resurfacing and installation of solar powered road studs in an attempt to reduce the number of accidents at this location, in turn reducing traffic congestion and associated emissions. The requirement for energy consuming maintenance equipment and methods was designed out with the utilisation of solar powered road studs which removed the requirement to install cables and ducting to connect to a power source and save on operational power.

Future improvement opportunities

Following the initial verification, the main future improvement opportunity which will be implemented is the development of a system to ensure that on-site environmental mitigation is successfully implemented and recorded. The Environmental Team have produced a checklist which can be used by construction teams to ensure that the site-specific mitigation measures outlined in the Site Environmental Management Plan are established and are effective for the duration of the works. The developed procedure will ensure clarity with regards to the process, and the mechanism will be fully integrated into the business management system.

The majority of BEAR Scotland’s work is to maintain the existing Trunk Road Network. As a result of undertaking the CEEQUAL Initial Verification process the intention is to improve the design process to allow the consideration and implementation of environmental enhancements within projects. Such improvements could involve enriching local habitats or improving the landscape within high amenity-value areas. This would involve working with Transport Scotland, including the assessment of the local environment and research of potential enhancements by the Environmental Team, agreement of feasibility with designers once site-specific parameters have been identified and incorporation into the final designs.

As well as reducing the impact on the environment, business travel plans provide many benefits which include cost-savings, solving parking issues and improving staff health and well-being. To remain effective, the existing business travel plan will be updated to reflect current attitudes and travel alternatives. This will involve undertaking a commuter staff travel survey, creating achievable targets and forming an action plan for these to be achieved. An updated business travel plan aims to promote informed travel choices, reduce dependence on cars and make efficient use of the transport network.

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