Fingers crossed... but the Kingskerswell bypass 'could' be finished before 2015 says boss
CONTRACTORS have raised the prospect of the Kingskerswell bypass being finished before 2015.
But the project director at Galliford Try has emphasised it is early days yet to give a firm completion date for the £110million project.
Work has started on the scheme and Jim Watson, project director from Galliford Try, said although they still had much of the detailed design to do, he would be 'extremely disappointed' if they couldn't improve on the current projected finishing date of around Christmas 2015.
He said so far more than 60 workers had been recruited locally.
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For example KJ Thornburn, from Paignton, had been taken on for site clearance and there were future opportunities in earthworks and drainage, and fencing.
Mr Watson said: "It is good business for me if I can source as much locally as I can. To date we have been successful. We have a very strong team building up of local people with the right experience and of the right calibre.
"A 60-strong specialist team have been working on the detailed design for structures like the fly over at Penn Inn and bridges.
"We have a huge task to complete the final design and get it approved, but it is going well," he said.
"The technical approval is very onerous and we are being put through the mill on a lot of detail."
He said they have to consult with bodies like Network Rail, the Environment Agency and Natural England. This work will continue until April next year.
Over the coming months they will develop the construction programme, mobilise the construction team and employ key specialist suppliers.
They will complete demolition of four more affected properties and clear the site and have started diverting utilities at the Penn Inn/Addison Road area.
They will start culvert work at Sainsbury's at Penn Inn and divert services in mid-January.
He said they were currently planning the extensive work needed to divert services such as sewers and pipes across the site to minimise disruption in the area.
They are also carrying out ecological work such as providing new homes for bats, grass snakes and newts.
Mr Watson said: "The project is on schedule and we have managed to gain a little time due to careful management.
"We want to minimise disruption throughout the construction process for both residents and commuters, and are keen to ensure the project remains on schedule."
In the spring the major earthworks will begin with the creation of a haul route through the site from the Hamelin Way end and a working platform at Aller Junction and the start on retaining walls at the north end on either side of the existing road near Sainsbury's. Some gardens will be affected.
A temporary diversion will be carried out of Yon Street, side roads have to be altered and several structures have to be built including the ramps and bridge at Penn Inn, an over bridge for Aller Road, and a tunnel and under bridge at Aller Cross. Some of the work will be done in 2014.
Mr Watson said: "Generally in 2013/14 we will be completing the flyover at Penn Inn and the main focus will be on earthworks, for which hopefully we will have a drier summer."