Councillors to consider revised NDR budget

17 November 2017

Norfolk County Councillors are being asked to increase the NDR budget by an extra £19.25m in a report going to Policy and Resources Committee on Monday 27 November.

Updated forecasts outlined in next week’s Report bring the final expected cost to £205m.  If agreed, £7.250m of the extra budget requested will come from money previously allocated in the Capital Programme.  A long-term capital funding arrangement for the remaining £12m will be submitted to the Policy and Resources Committee at its January meeting.

The Report also contains details on what costs have changed including utility diversions and Network Rail delays costing £8.915m.  These were seen by members of Environment, Development and Transport Committee in a confidential paper in June 2017.  Now that contract negotiations with Balfour Beatty are nearly complete, this information is no longer deemed commercially sensitive.

Last Saturday the first section of the NDR was successfully opened to traffic, enabling vehicles to drive from the A1067 Fakenham Road to the A140 Cromer Road.  The remainder of the road is due to open in early 2018. The next phased opening is expected to be just before or after the upcoming Christmas period and will see A140 Cromer Road to A1151 Wroxham road open to vehicles.  The remaining section of the NDR, to the A47 Postwick junction, is programmed to be opened before the end of March 2018.

Martin Wilby, Chairman of the Environmental Development and Transport Committee at Norfolk County Council, said: “There is no doubt that the NDR is set to deliver huge benefits to the people of Norfolk and the county’s economy. Since the first section opened last week it has been well used and there has been positive feedback so far.

“Five months ago we were open in revealing that the NDR was likely to go over budget, but due to commercial sensitives we couldn’t detail how much or the reasons why.  We always promised to be transparent with the figures and we are now close to reaching an agreement with Balfour Beatty so can make this information public.

“On a project of this scale, it’s inevitable to incur unexpected costs. But our focus now is to continue with the work and ensure the road is completed on time.  There will always be key learning points from projects of this size and value and I expect that these will be applied to future projects, such as the Norwich Western Link or Great Yarmouth Third River Crossing.

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