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Agenda Item No

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

 

Cabinet Meeting:  17th December, 2012

 

Report of the Cabinet Member for the Environment and Visible Services

 

Gileston to Old Mill Highway Improvement Project

 

Purpose of the Report

1.         To advise Members of the Welsh Government's aspirations for progressing this project.

2.         To seek Members' approval for the proposed method of commissioning consultants to complete the detailed design of the project, the preparation of tender documents and the conclusion of the tendering process.

Recommendations

1.         That Members note the contents of the report.

2.         That Members approve the proposed method of commissioning consultants to complete the detailed design, the preparation of tender documents and the conclusion of the tendering process.

3.         That the Director of Visible Services and Housing, in consultation with the Director of Resources and the Cabinet Member for the Environment and Visible Services, be given delegated authority to appoint Capita Symonds (consultants) to assist with the delivery of Stage 1 of the Gileston to Old Mill Highway Improvement project as described in this report.

4.         That a further progress report be presented to Members in due course.

Reasons for the Recommendations

1.         For information. 

2.         To allow the Council to assist the Welsh Government to progress with the project in the most efficient and cost-effective way.

3.         To allow the appointment of consultants to be progressed in the most efficient and cost-effective way.

4.         To ensure that Members are kept up to date with this project.

Background

3.         The Council has had aspirations to undertake highway improvements to the Gileston to Old Mill section of the highway network for many years but has not had sufficient funds to progress these works.

4.         The proposed highway improvement scheme between Gileston and Old Mill was intended to be undertaken as part of the off-site works in relation to the major development of the Defence Training College at St Athan.  Cabinet will be aware that this development will not now be progressed.

5.         Welsh Government (WG) is keen for these highway improvement works to be progressed as part of its ongoing development proposals at the St Athan Enterprise Zone with a wish that the works are completed by the end of financial year 2013/14.

6.         At a meeting in December 2011, WG proposed that they would provide the Council with £3.5m to progress these works.  The intention was that the Council would act as Client for the project as WG could not directly undertake works on the Council’s highway network.

7.         In March 2012, WG provided £100k to the Council to progress an Advanced Works Contract to undertake an initial site clearance operation and to install fencing.  The Council commissioned Capita Symonds (CS) to prepare the tender documents and to supervise the advanced works.  The Council’s in-house contractor was awarded the contract and the works were completed by the end of March as requested.

8.         CS had previously been commissioned by WG to progress the design of the highway improvement scheme which had been brought to an advanced stage sufficient to obtain a realistic cost estimate for the Main Works.  In November 2012, CS provided the Council with a Project Proposal and cost estimate for the remaining tasks to be undertaken to complete the design and to procure a contractor for the Main Works.  These tasks include the following: 

·                Scheme Project Management

·                Assistance with Land and Public Rights of Way Matters

·                Assistance with Traffic Regulation Orders

·                Statutory Undertakers Liaison and Engagement (including DCWW)

·                Ecology Advice

·                Design amendment

·                Preparation of Tender Package

·                Tender Evaluation and Reporting

·                CDM Co-ordinator

Relevant Issues and Options

Staged Approach

 

9.         WG has proposed that a staged approach be adopted to progress the scheme with Stage 1 being the completion of the detailed design, the preparation of the tender documents for the Main Works and the completion of the tendering process.

10.      On receipt of the returned tenders, WG will be in a more confident position to progress to Stage 2 of the project and to provide the Council with funds to progress with the Main Works.

Programme

 

11.      WG is seeking a mechanism whereby the scheme can be brought to a conclusion at the earliest opportunity with the construction phase being completed by the end of March 2014.  It has been agreed with WG that to achieve this completion date, the project needs to be progressed as soon as possible with spend being spread over financial years 2012/13 and 2013/14.

12.      The programme to achieve the proposed completion date would be best achieved by retaining CS to assist with bringing the project to a conclusion as they have progressed the design to a very advanced stage and are familiar with all aspects of the scheme including land issues, ecological issues and Welsh Water requirements regarding the pipe bridge. 

Exemption from Financial Regulations

 

13.      The Council's Financial Regulations require that where the estimated value of the supply of works, goods or services over £15k and up to £100k shall only be issued if at least three written quotations have been first invited.  Due to the aspirations of WG for the delivery of this project and their time constraints it is considered inappropriate to seek quotations for the commissioning of a consultant for Stage 1 of the project.  

14.      Seeking quotations to appoint a consultant to progress with Stage 1 of the project would itself require additional staff time to prepare the tenders, analyse the submissions and prepare a tender report and therefore increase costs to the project and delay delivery.  To seek quotations for Stage 1 rather than retaining CS the following issues would arise:

·                No other consultant is likely to want to develop a scheme that has been so well advanced by CS and to take responsibility for it.

·                The appointment of a new consultant at this stage would lead to increased risks in both time and cost with continuity being lost and the possibility of important issues being overlooked or ignored.

15.      Exemption from Financial Regulation 20.5 is therefore sought.

Welsh Government Funding

 

16.      The funding for the scheme will be provided by WG therefore there is no financial risk to the Council. 

Proposal to Progress with Stage 1

 

17.      It is proposed that the cost estimate submitted by CS to undertake Stage 1 of the project as indicated above will be benchmarked against data held by the Council's Engineers and it is proposed that the Director of Visible Services and Housing be given delegated authority to approve the appointment of CS provided that the cost estimate is considered to be economically advantageous and funding approval is received from WG.

18.      As soon as Cabinet has confirmed that this process be employed to progress with Stage 1 of the project in the manner described above, WG will be in a position to provide the Council with appropriate funding.

Proposal to Progress with Stage 2

 

19.      It is currently being proposed that the Main Works contract will be a design and build contract with use being made of the South East Wales Contractor Framework.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment

20.      The total scheme cost estimate comprises the following approximate sums:

·                Consultant Costs

£73k

·                Main Works Cost

£1.970m

·                Other Identified Costs

£532k

(including the completed Advanced Works Contract, estimated VoG costs and project management and site supervision of the construction phase)

·                Risk & Optimum Bias

£920k

·                Total

£3.495m

21.      All costs for this project will be met by WG and funds will need to be included in the Council's Capital Programme as funding approvals for each project stage are received.

22.      The Council's interests in the project will be managed by the Council's Highway Projects and Traffic Management Group, Highways and Engineering. 

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

23.      Improvements to the highway network will assist traffic movements and in this case should improve highway safety and reduce fuel consumption for vehicles using this section of the network in future.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

24.      The Highways Act 1980 allows highway authorities to undertake improvement works on the highway network.

25.      There are no Human Rights Implications with regard to this report.

Crime and Disorder Implications

26.      Improvements to the highway network are likely to reduce the incidents of public disorder.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

27.      The proposals will benefit all sections of the community by improving highway safety and reducing congestion.

28.      Any signage associated with this project will adhere to the requirements of the Council's Welsh Language Scheme.

Corporate/Service Objectives

29.      To maintain and develop a safe and effective highway.

Policy Framework and Budget

30.      This is a matter for Executive Decision by Cabinet.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

31.      No consultation has taken place yet as the detailed design for the highway improvement scheme has not been completed.  As soon as this information is available all necessary consultations will be progressed.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

32.      Economy and Environment.

Background Papers

None.

 

Contact Officer

Paul Gay - Group Engineer (Highway Projects and Traffic Management)

Tel:  02920 673 086

 

Officers Consulted

Operational Manager Legal Services

Accountant, Building and Visible Services

Group Auditor

 

Responsible Officer:

Miles Punter, Director of Visible Services and Housing.

 

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