Smart motorway scheme “put on hold”

It’s reported that Highways England has paused work on the M3 smart motorway project after safety fears from MPs.

The website Construction Enquirer reports Balfour Beatty is “the first to be hit with National Highways confirming that its team on the M3 Smart motorway project should be stood down”.

The report says civil engineering arm had built work compounds in Hampshire and was about to start phase one work on upgrading the central reservation barrier between junction 9 and 14, but National Highways chiefs have written to Balfour stating they would now be ‘temporarily postponing’ the planned start of the £140m project.

Construction Enquirer quotes a statement to member firms in the Smart Motorway Programme Alliance, which says National Highways confirmed the phased openings of completed sections of the M1 Junctions 13-16, M6 Junctions 13-15 and the M4 Junctions 8/9-12 would proceed as planned over the next few weeks.

But the report comments the decision to halt the M3 works has now raised questions about Costain’s M6 smart motorway project north of junction 21.

(Picture – National Highways)

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