Transport Scotland upgraded this vital part of the west of Scotland's trunk road network to motorway standard.
Transport Minister Stewart Stevenson today announced a multimillion pound boost for Scotland’s construction industry with the appointment of a contractor for the M80 Stepps to Haggs project.
The national transport agency Transport Scotland has signed the contract that awards Highway Management (Scotland) Ltd the £320 million project to construct a new 11 mile (18 km) stretch of the A80 between Stepps and Haggs. This will also include costs for maintenance of the road for 30 years.
The project is a welcome boost for Scotland’s construction industry as it will deliver more than 500 jobs over the two-year construction period.
Transport Minister Stewart Stevenson said:
"The Scottish Government is absolutely clear that an efficient transport system is essential for enhancing productivity and delivering faster, more sustainable growth.
"This project is another example of how our continuing investment is helping the hard pressed construction sector now, creating hundreds of construction jobs.
"The A80 is an essential part of the trunk road network in central Scotland and one of the most heavily used. This project will complete the missing gap between Stirling and Glasgow bringing real benefits to the surrounding communities and across the central belt as a whole."
Against the backdrop of a global economic slowdown Transport Scotland is driving forward, on behalf of the Scottish Government, the largest transport investment programme Scotland has ever seen with a number of vital projects.
Recent investment across road and rail – either in longer term maintenance or specific infrastructure construction – has supported nearly 13,000 jobs. Over £2.5 billion will be invested in Scotland’s strategic transport networks over the next three years and the M80 project forms part of this major infrastructure programme that will return significant benefits across the country.
This will deliver not only substantial, direct economic savings to businesses and individuals that come from improved transport links, but also improved road safety and other wider social gains such as better accessibility and reduced environmental impact.
Construction works for this particular scheme will include:
Martin Pugh, Managing Director, Bilfinger Berger Project Investments said:
"Tremendous effort has been demonstrated by all those involved to achieve financial close in challenging times and this is something we can all be proud of. I would like to thank the team for their tenacity and hard work. We are looking forward to working further with Transport Scotland in the coming years."
Early preparatory works have already started along the route and construction will begin immediately for the motorway to be fully opened in 2011.