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Welsh council to maintain road for private firm

A “unique” agreement in which a Welsh council maintains a road on behalf of a private contractor has been renewed.

Gwynedd Council has renewed a major contract with the private consortium UK Highways to operate and maintain a section of the A55 Expressway.

The council will continue to service the highway between Holyhead port and Llandygai, near Bangor after both parties agreed to extend the contract for a further 18 years from March 2011 until UK Highways’ concession ends in 2029. The deal is worth £20m.

UK Highways, which has a 30 year concession with the Welsh Assembly Government, started a contract with Gwynedd Council to operate and maintain this section of the A55 back in 2001.

Gwyn Morris Jones, Gwynedd Council’s Head of Highways described the agreement as ‘unique’.  He said: “The fact that the Council and UK Highways have backed the agreement so warmly is a reflection of the quality service the Council’s workforce has provided over the past decade and to the close working and effective relationship that exists between both parties.  We now look forward to building on this success in partnership with UK Highways.”

John Gardner, UK Highways general manager added: “We are very pleased to have agreed the contract with Gwynedd to the end of the concession as this recognises the hard work that has been carried out and we look forward to continued success going forward. 

“We are grateful to Gwyn and his team for the effort that has gone into securing this exceptional contract and it demonstrates our continued commitment to invest in local resources.”