This was a complex and diverse project which opened to public acclaim three months early – an impressive result considering its technical difficulties. The road necessitated constructing 26 structures within a route through Bingley town centre, between an electrified railway and a canal, traversing three peat bogs and with a major cutting through a contaminated landfill site – all within a length of 4.5km.
Environmental measures included retaining 250,000m3 of contaminated waste on site and reclamation of the entire area of the former landfill.
The construction team engaged with the community, especially in school liaison, and the results are clear: the traffic levels in Bingley have been significantly reduced and the town now has the basis for regeneration.
The Judges said:
"The A650 Bingley Relief Road had some tricky site conditions to negotiate and a history of local opposition. But aside from the technical skills displayed, it shows what an excellent job was done in terms of public consultation – with exhibitions, neighbourhood forums and a project website all playing their part."
Paul Watters, Head of Road Policy at the AA Motoring Trust, said:
"The A650 Bingley Relief Road shows that there are still road schemes around that gain public support because they remove the blight of traffic and let communities get on with their lives. CABE's award is a welcome first as it will re-energise people to press for high quality road solutions in places where roads have clearly not kept pace with growing traffic - this was certainly the case at Bingley where for 20 years a main road came to a halt near a town centre."