- Client: National Highways
- Sector: Infrastructure
- Value: £43m
- Location: Manchester
- Service: Civil Engineering
- Completion date: November 2021
Our highly collaborative £43m joint venture with Amey has significantly improved connectivity between the M6 and A556 in Knutsford, near Manchester.
Junction 19 of the M6 is a critical link between Cheshire and Greater Manchester, accommodating 65,000 vehicles a day. But with traffic congestion already a concern, and with numbers expected to rise to 88,000 vehicles a day by 2036 due to the expansion of Airport City Manchester the development of Wythenshawe MediPark, failure to upgrade the junction threatened gridlock.
So, National Highways sought a partner to manage improvements while staying within the existing footprint. AmeySRM, our joint venture with Amey, provided the ideal blend of design and construction expertise, delivering the improvements in November 2021, having successfully managed works through the COVID-19 pandemic.
The work that we’ve done will provide long-lasting benefits for the local community, as well as the tens of thousands of people who pass through the junction each day. We’ve already received messages of thanks from motorists and residents who are using the junction and enjoying the improved connections it offers.Pat Cumming Senior Project Manager
Enhancing the local environment and nearby communities
As well as improving air quality and boosting the local economy, the project also provided several other sustainability and social value benefits.
As the bridge is set within the existing footprint of the roundabout, we’ve reduced land take. Life-cycle analysis resulted in the specification of weathering steel girders and stainless-steel bearings, doubling their lifespan and negating future repainting activities. We planted native grassland, trees and shrubs with the SuDS Pond installation to remove pollutants from surface water runoff and to provide ecological potential. And we disposed of waste in accordance with the waste hierarchy, including reusing/recycling cat’s eyes where possible, and reusing waste material as recycled aggregate.
The project team engaged in several environmental awareness initiatives. To celebrate World Environment Day, we planted flowers in repurposed tyres around the site. To mark Cycle to Work Day, workforce members ditched their cars and rode their bikes to work – promoting the improvements we made for local cyclists as part of the works, including creating better local links, safer crossings and an improved route across the roundabout. We also took the opportunity to tidy up the cycle path outside the site compound by holding litter picks under the tunnel and along the old A556 and A5033.
Social value and community benefits include:
- Supporting, developing and inspiring apprentices with 285 apprentice work days on the project, and creating a short behind-the-scenes film providing insight into what it’s like to be an apprentice.
- Providing 56 hours of volunteering to local community initiatives such as the Children’s Adventure Farm Trust.
- Raising approx. £7,000 for a local community club, Knutsford Scouts Hut and Macmillan Cancer Trust.
- Building a disabled ramp for the local St Paul’s church.
- Undertaking STEM activities in local schools and involving children in a drawing competition of the new bridge.
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