Suffolk County Council starts search for contractor for highway maintenance services

Suffolk County Council is to start the search for a contractor to provide highway services cross the county.

Earlier this year, the council agreed on developing a hybrid model for its next contract. Its pre-market engagement said the new contract will be based around seven key themes; collaboration and partnership, social considerations, climate emergency, environmental considerations, customer communication and engagement, a sensible and fair procurement process, commercialism and enterprise. It detail it said:

  • Collaboration and partnership: “we are keen to establish a partnership with the appointed service provider, which embodies trust in service delivery, pricing, actively supports our objectives, promotes collaboration and embraces the needs of our customers.”
  • Social considerations: “in putting in place this important Contract, we will consider how we can bring Social Value benefits to our communities by ensuring these are embedded in the service specification, form part of our procurement decisions and are delivered through our Contract.”
  • Climate Emergency: “the potential service provider will need to demonstrate how they will help the Council with its aim to be Carbon Net Zero by 2030. This will include reviewing and monitoring highway service activities to mitigate their environmental impact whilst actively working in accordance with the Council’s Climate Change Commercial Ask.”
  • Environmental considerations: “we also wish to seek out opportunities within the highway service where we can make positive contributions to biodiversity across Suffolk.”
  • Customer communication and engagement: “communication for the highways service plays a key role in keeping our customers and stakeholders informed about the different services being delivered (location and time) and informs us of defects, complaints and compliments.”
  • A sensible and fair procurement process: “in conducting this procurement process, we will ensure best practice procurement processes whilst adhering to the requirements of the Public Contract Regulations.”
  • Commercialism and enterprise: “we strive for continuous improvement to ensure our objective of efficient and effective public service remains at the forefront of the services we provide.”

The new contract is expected to last 10 years from 1 October 2023 to 30 September 2033, with the option to extend for up to a further 10 years. The anticipated value is £1bn based on the total of 20 years with an approximate value of £50 million per year.

According to the pre-market engagement notice, the winning contractor will be expected to deliver a number of core highway maintenance services as well as other supplies of goods and services. This work will include:

  • Construction work for pipelines, communication and power lines, for highways, roads, airfields and railways; flatwork
  • Construction, foundation and surface works for highways, roads
  • Gully cleaning and emptying services
  • Snow-clearing services
  • Construction work for bridges and tunnels, shafts and subways
  • Tree pruning and hedge trimming
  • Highways materials
  • Construction work
  • Architectural, construction, engineering and inspection services

A PME document is available on request from The contract notice is expected to be published around 28 March 2022.


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