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Surge in work on region’s infrastructure

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Nearly half of the total value of infrastructure construction projects in the UK were awarded in Norfolk and the East of England in January, says a report. The value of infrastructure contracts in the East of England totalled more than £380 million in January, 41 per cent of the overall contracts awarded for the sector and an increase of 35 per cent on the month last year.

The surge was largely due to key projects such as the Boreham Interchange contract awarded at a value of £200 million, and the £80 million redevelopment to Stansted Airport, according to Barbour ABI’s Economic & Construction Market Review. It highlights growth in the infrastructure construction sector UK-wide, with the value of projects totalling £1.7 billion in January based on a three month-rolling average – a 6.5 per cent increase on the same month last year.

Michael Dall, lead economist at Barbour ABI, said :“While infrastructure construction in the East of England has been boosted by two huge contracts awarded this month, there is a consistent pipeline of significant projects including the £12 million solar farm in Reydon, the £6 million redevelopment to Bedford Bus Station and plans for an anaerobic digestion plant near Beccles worth £5 million.”

“In terms of future outlook, the region should continue to benefit from £100 billion worth of investment that the Government committed to infrastructure construction from 2015 to 2020. Projects to look out for include the A5-M1 new link road, Lower Thames Crossing and the devolvement of part of the West Anglia rail franchise to the Mayor of London.”

Jonathan Cage, vice president of the Norfolk Chambers of Commerce and managing director of Create Consulting Engineers Ltd, added: “We are experiencing high levels of activity across the housing industry within Norfolk, with house builders keen to press on with planning applications and delivery of new sites. This has already started to have an impact on the wider construction industry, with more generalised activity starting to increase.

“With this renewed activity the pressure for more strategic infrastructure schemes such as the A11 Dualling, the Postwick Hub and the recently submitted NDR proposals will only help to continue growth in this sector. It appears at long last that confidence is starting to come back.”

Last Updated ( Thursday, 27 March 2014 09:35 )