You are currently browsing the daily archive for 02/04/2021.

In April 2019 the National Audit Office said:

“In pure economic terms, because of the high cost of building a tunnel, the Amesbury to Berwick Down project, at £1.15 of quantified benefit for every £1 spent, has a significantly lower benefit–cost ratio than is usual in road schemes. Given our experience of cost increases on projects of this kind, this ratio could move to an even lower or negative value.

But by now, after exactly two hard years which have included the little matters of Brexit and a world pandemic the value-for-money ratio must have worsened (why haven’t we been told?). But now comes a cost bombshell they can’t hide:

Plan to widen Stonehenge Tunnel for hard shoulder [Construction News]: “Highways England is costing out plans to widen the proposed A303 Stonehenge Tunnel to create a hard shoulder on the dual carriageway scheme. Consultants are being asked to investigate the impact of adding emergency refuges or an additional hard shoulder in order to increase tunnel safety … If Highways England decides to go-ahead with the 11th-hour safety changes it would impact existing budgets for the project.

“Impact existing budgets” is putting it mildly!

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