The London Borough of Barnet plans to extend its highways term maintenance contract with Conway and AECOM, enabling the new procurement to be informed by the outcome of Transport for London’s new generation London Highways Alliance contracts (LoHAC).
Conway and AECOM are the current LoHAC contractors for north-west London. Barnet began using their services in 2014.
TfL is currently procuring the next generation of LoHAC contracts, which are due to commence next April. Barnet’s contract with Conway and AECOM ends on 31 March but councillors have approved a plan to extend it until the end of September 2023.
The new end date is aligned with the end of the separate Re Ltd contract, the council’s joint venture with Capita, which also includes highways services.
Barnet says ending the Conway/AECOM and Re contracts on the same date will allow decisions about a different allocation of responsibilities between the parties to be made.
The council’s environment chair Dean Cohen said extending the Conway/AECOM contract also made sense because contractors were unlikely to bid for borough contracts until the outcome of the new LoHAC procurements are known later this year.
“The principal reason for this is that success in LoHAC provides a base of operations including vehicle and plant, fleet, personnel, depots, and the systems required to deliver other highways maintenance contract arrangements within the London area,” said Cohen. “This is particularly the case in Barnet as the authority does not have any depots to pass over to a new contractor.”
He added: “If there is a change of contractor(s) when the new LoHAC framework agreement is awarded, the costs associated with the investment in new base of operations would be borne by the new LoHAC contractor(s). When Barnet awards its contract, it should be able to leverage this investment to encourage both more competitive interest and better value tender returns.”
Barnet will keep the option of joining the new LoHAC contract for North London in reserve, in case terms for the extension cannot be agreed with Conway/AECOM.
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