A NEW £90m link road in Cheshire has scooped two major awards.

The project was the biggest ever infrastructure scheme carried out by Cheshire East Council’.

The Congleton link road project team won ‘large project of the year’ at both the Institute of Highways Engineers’ (Mercia Branch) and the Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation 2022 awards ceremonies.

The project team, made up of Cheshire East Council and contractors Graham and Ringway Jacobs’ staff, delivered the 5.5km Wolstenholme Elmy Way – on budget – against a backdrop of severe challenges of exceptional wet weather and disruption due to the Covid pandemic.

The latest recognition follows a Civil Engineering Contractors’ North West award last October, for ‘social value’, which recognised exceptional partnership work delivering local community initiatives.

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Councillor Craig Browne, chair of Cheshire East Council’s highways and transport committee, said: “These awards are entirely well-deserved accolades for the whole team for their commitment, passion and dedication to delivering the council’s biggest infrastructure scheme to date. 

“This project not only delivers improved connectivity – between Macclesfield, Congleton, the surrounding area and the M6 – but has also helped reduce congestion and benefited air quality in Congleton town centre, whilst releasing 20 hectares of new employment land with the potential to create 3,000 jobs by 2035.

“This scheme is a cornerstone of Cheshire East Council’s Local Plan vision for creating sustainable, jobs-led growth and vibrant communities.

“The whole team should be proud of their commitment to delivering a high-quality scheme in challenging circumstances, while ensuring that engaging with local people, keeping them informed and improving communities was always at the heart of the project.” 

Alastair Lewis, contracts director for Graham, said: “These latest awards are fantastic and well-deserved recognition for the whole team for their hard work and dedication to delivering a first-class project. 

“Despite the challenge created by the Covid pandemic, we were able to deliver a complex scheme within budget – and as close to the original schedule as possible – while also helping support many local community projects in the local area.”

Wolstenholme Elmy Way was opened to traffic on 19 April 2021 and joins the A534 Sandbach Road to the west and the A536 Macclesfield Road to the north.

Works on Congleton link road included:

The creation of a new 5.5km single carriageway with eight new roundabout junctions; 

Excavation and relocation of more than 850,000 tonnes of earthworks; 

The laying of more than 100,000m2 of road and footpath asphalt; 

The erection of more than 25,000m of fencing; 

Installation of more than 25,000m of new drains; and 

Extensive landscaping – including the planned planting of 15,000 trees.