Civil Engineering


A585 Norcross Roundabout

improvements to congested roundabout

The £10m A585 Norcross Roundabout Scheme saw client, designer and contractors work effectively together under National Highways’ Asset Delivery (AD) style contracts, where collaboration and teamwork is the cornerstone of delivery. Carnell were principal contractor on the multidisciplinary scheme which included a number of Lot contractors from the AD Construction Works Framework (CWF).

The scale of the scheme can be seen in numbers:

  • 1650m linear metres of drainage.
  • 5000m of lighting and traffic signal ducting.
  • 20,000 tonnes of material imported
  • 50 traffic signal poles erected.  


Collaboration and collective problem solving enabled several benefits: Design was brought forward by 5 months through ECI. Land procurement delays were mitigated through an alternative construction strategy, and delays from utilities companies were solved by re-sequencing the construction programmes.

During construction, value engineering continued and a number of efficiencies were identified and accepted by National Highways which saved in excess of £600k.

How teamwork delivered improved outcomes

The success of this scheme revolved primarily around a collaborative team working approach, involvement and engagement with key stakeholders in the scheme planning process and the use of several lean improvement techniques, chosen to improve performance but also compliment the team working ethos.

The team carried out combined weekly safety tours which included National Highways England, principal contractor and other CWF contractors. Whilst having obvious safety benefits, this engendered a collective responsibility for safety. This was supported by experienced National Highways construction staff offering feedback to the wider supply chain team.

The primary aim of the ‘Home Safe and Well’ strategy was been achieved, with zero RIDDOR reportable accidents in over 200 working days.

Challenges encountered

The scheme had a disproportionate number of buried services in a relatively small area, making excavation extremely difficult. The team discovered an anomaly with current Cat scans as they failed to pick up pot-ended cables.

Carnell adopted an innovative approach called ‘3D Array Scanning’, the results and benefits of which were used for the benefit of all suppliers on site.

The team have worked closely with utility companies, often sharing resources to get the job done safely and efficiently, also developing joint ideas to help mitigate risk. For example, an unchartered asbestos water main was found and it was agreed to sleeve it rather than divert it, saving time and money in the process. ENWL utility company agreed to provide a specialist team to carry out civils works to ensure safe working in difficult areas.

Community engagement

A great deal of stakeholder liaison took place. The National Highways communications team created a detailed stakeholder analysis and communications plan in advance of the works. 

Collaborative Planning events were well attended by stakeholders and worked out optimum solutions that would enable efficient and effective delivery of the scheme while minimising impact on the local community.

Road-users and local residents were also well communicated with. The scheme had a single point of contact phone number which local residents could call and get an immediate response to any concerns day or night. Updates and changes to programme were relayed using a variety of methods including: leaflets to 50,000 properties, press releases, e-mail updates, a text alert service which had over 1500 subscribers, localised letter drops, face to face visits and a weekly drop-in session at a local church.