Bad weather to mean further spiralling costs on Aberdeen bypass, Galliford Try say

Galliford Try, one of the construction partners on the £745m Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route (AWPR), has said it expects the practical completion of the project this summer but has conceded it faces additional costs due to delays and bad weather.

It expects weather-related additional costs of less than £25m as it continues to plough on with the project after the road was scheduled to be finished this spring. 

Galliford Try, Balfour Beatty and Carillion, were responsible for delivering one of Scotland’s biggest infrastructure projects but when Birmingham-based Carillion liquidated in January, the remaining two partners were left to pick up the pieces.

Galliford Try was then forced in February to admit it expected the cost of completing the bypass to be £150m higher than it had originally projected. 

Commenting on the latest announcement, chief executive Peter Truscott said: “We have experienced some further cost pressure, principally from weather delays, which are likely to increase the exceptional charge in the current year. The amount will depend upon progress recovered through the summer and is expected to be lower than the £25m charge taken in the first half. We are continuing to discuss several significant claims.  Practical completion of the project is anticipated this summer.”

Earlier this year, economy secretary Keith Brown told MSPs the 28-mile Aberdeen bypass which was originally given the green light by Scottish ministers in 2009, would hopefully be opened in late August. While admitting the revision to the opening date was “very disappointing” to the people of the north east, Brown said he had to accept the expert advice of our contractors on the ground who are delivering the project.

Partner Balfour Beatty Balfour Beatty also confirmed the project was on track to meet the latest revised completion date. Chief executive Leo Quinn said there would be no change to the £105m to £120m Balfour Beatty cash outflow guidance for 2018 provided at the full year 2017 results.

Despite the spiralling costs on the Aberdeen road project, Galliford revealed a favourable trading statement for the start of 2018, with the firm expecting to report full-year pre-tax profits in line with the current range of analysts’ expectations of between £138m and £146m. Its housing business, Linden Homes, reported a slight drop in sales since the beginning of the year, at 0.71 sales per outlet per week compared to 0.74 this time last year, although the value of its reserved sales rose from £1.176bn to £1.183bn.

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