RESERVE bidder Morgan Est has upset the odds to claim a £51 million privately financed road scheme in Scotland.
Angus Council named the firm preferred bidder for the A92 Dundee-Arbroath dual carriageway scheme last week after dismissing a challenge from the M-Link consortium (Mowlem/ Morrison).
Morgan Est/Barclay failed to make the original shortlist for the project but was drafted in by the authority after Carillion withdrew from contention in 2001.
Two of the other original rivals, Balfour Beatty and Barr, pulled out of the running for the 30-year concession last year claiming bidding commitments on other road schemes in Scotland.
The contractors were also disappointed by a reduction in the maintenance element of the scheme.
Now the council is aiming to reach financial close with Morgan Est by July before work begins in August, lasting twoand-a-half years.
The deal will involve dualling a 19 km stretch of the A92 which is notorious for its poor lines of site and traffic congestion. The widening has been mooted for over 40 years following a series of fatal accidents.
The project was delayed by a lengthy public inquiry in 2001 but the new road is due to open in 2006.