Skanska has started construction work on a major road infrastructure project valued at £1 billion.
A new 10-mile dual carriageway will link the A1 and A421 Black Cat roundabout in Bedfordshire to the A428 Caxton Gibbet roundabout in Cambridgeshire.
Skanska is responsible for the design and build of the flagship National Highways scheme, a contract worth nearly £680 million to the business.
Both roundabouts will be remodelled into free-flowing junctions, with a new junction also built at Cambridge Road, to improve access to St Neots and its train station, as well as new footpaths and safer crossings built along the route.
When complete, the upgrade could save drivers up to an hour-and-a-half on their journeys every week. “The upgrades promise to transform the region by enhancing connectivity, alleviating congestion, and improving road safety,” a Skanska notice reads.
The project, first revealed in 2014, has been delayed several times due to cost reviews and legal challenges. It is expected to open to traffic in 2027.
Skanska UK CEO, Katy Dowding said at the ground-breaking ceremony: “Today marks an important moment for all involved in this highways scheme. Achieving this milestone wouldn’t have been possible without the huge commitment of the project team, the support of our customer National Highways, our partners, stakeholders and the invaluable contributions from the local communities.”
Transport secretary, Mark Harper, added: “I’m delighted we have marked the start of works on the A428 Black Cat to Caxton Gibbet project, a huge investment by the government to grow the economy in the region and reduce congestion for drivers.”
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