The ‘Main Works’ element for the project was tendered during 2019/20, with submission of tenders in mid-March 2020. This was prior to the impacts of Covid-19 being understood. During the tender appraisal process, the contractors were asked if they wanted to make an allowance for the possible future impacts of Covid-19. However, this was in July 2020, when the impacts of the subsequent waves of Covid-19, lockdowns and consequent economic and supply chain conditions were unknown. Clearly this, the War in Ukraine and the prevailing geopolitical situation have created financial pressures, which could not have reasonably been foreseen.
A number of options have been explored by the County Council including seeking additional funding, descoping sections, deferment of junction improvements. A report was taken to Cabinet in November 2022 outlining these options. This recommended that descoping sections of the work and providing additional financial support would provide the best outcome. The descoping has been chosen on the basis that the overall project still maintains the strategic aims and objectives of the Full Business Case.
Cabinet has agreed to the following descoping of the scheme, which will be implemented immediately:
- To remove the overtaking section between the Portmore and Landkey junctions.
- To amend the design of the Bishops Tawton roundabout
- To not replace the permanent fencing on site
As a result the scheme end date has also been amended, to June 2024. This will allow for the redesign and procurement of Bishops Tawton roundabout.