The A428 between the A1 junction near St Neots and the A1198 Caxton Gibbet forms part of the Felixstowe to Birmingham corridor which is an important strategic link connecting seaports on the east coast of England to the Midlands, is part of the trans-European network, and intersects with other major north-south road corridors.
The A428 is a strategic route for vehicles travelling east-west between Oxford and Cambridge, via urban settlements including Milton Keynes and Bedford. The A428 extends approximately 17 miles between the A1 and A14/M11. The A428 is a single lane carriageway between the A1 and A1198 at Caxton Gibbet, being the only section of the A428 that is not dual carriageway. The A428 was identified as experiencing significant junction capacity issues; specifically, the Felixstowe to Midlands Route Strategy highlighted the following issues and opportunities:
- Junction capacity improvements at the Black Cat Roundabout
- Severe lack of capacity (links and junctions) on the A428 between the A1 and A1198
- Creating an expressway by ‘filling the gap’ between the Black Cat Roundabout and A428/ A1198 Caxton Gibbet Roundabout.
The A428 is an important route in an area of the country where considerable growth in housing and employment is planned.
The scheme will:
- Reduce congestion and delays
- Increase road capacity
- Improve journey time reliability
- Supports the growth identified in local plans
- Improve safety
- Provide alternative access to local roads
- Help the transport network to better cope with road maintenance and with incidents such as collisions, breakdowns, maintenance
- Improve the environmental impact of transport on communities along the existing A428 route
- Provide improved routes between communities for cyclists, horse riders and pedestrians
- Reconnect communities
- Improve safe and effective access for public transport users
Gattica were appointed by Jacobs in 2014 to work with them during the Preliminary Design Stage. Gattica gathered all the relevant utility information in order to inform the preliminary design of major utility infrastructure present along the route.
Gattica were appointed by Aecom in October 2017 to work with them towards Detailed Design. This has included working closely with them to fine -tune the preliminary design taking into consideration issues facing the design and construction due to likely programme and budget constraints due to the presence of major infrastructure along the proposed route. As the design progresses Gattica will be the point of contact between the utility owners and the designers in order to negotiate diversion and protection works.