Cumberland Council has launched a tender for project management support for the troubled Carlisle Southern Link Road (CSLR). The scheme, which was initially to be built by Morgan Sindall, has seen its costs soar from £65M to £226M in just over two years. Last month the council appointed rival contractor Galliford Try to the project however it is also tendering a £1.5M project management contract. According to tender documents, Cumberland Council is seeking to appoint a professional services provider to support the existing client team with project management, commercial resources and specialist input and advice to team. Expected support includes appointing core staff to be retained throughout the scope of the project works as well as additional project and programme resources to backfill roles as and when required. The management contact also aims to ensure the CSLR is “delivered on time (or bettered), under the target cost, to exceptional ‘right first time’ quality standards, and with minimal change control / compensation events” The Council is seeking to procure the support from June 2023 to September 2025. Once built, the new link road will connect Junction 42 of the M6 with the A595 and will connect with Carlisle Northern Development route from the A595 to Junction 44 of the M6. The scheme will include four new roundabouts, five cycle bridges and four road bridges and a cycle path along the northern side along its full length.

Two of The Bridges Will Cross Network Rail Assets.

(West Coast Main Line and Cumbrian Coast Line) with one of these bridges also crossing the River Caldew. Morgan Sindall had been appointed to build the new road in March 2021, which had been proposed as a two-stage design and build contract. However, after enabling works were completed, the project – to build 8km of new road – was put on indefinite hold last summer due to spiralling inflation. A fresh procurement process was then launched to find a contractor to finish the scheme. Cumbria County Council said at this stage that it expected remaining works to cost £150M and that it would approach public bodies for help with funding. The project has secured £212M from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities to add to the £13.8M budgeted by the county council and Carlisle City Council.