Historic steps are being made to provide Local Authorities with low cost procurement means to invest in the services of innovative product suppliers.  This will ultimately provide best value solutions for the Local Authority and the taxpayer.

The answer is the unique Project Amber Framework from Blackpool Council and its partnership with LCRIG (Local Council Roads Innovation Group).

Local Authorities can join LCRIG free of charge on the understanding that they accept the ethos of collaboration and communication with each other and the member Contractors.  From this they can access and procure highway services from within the Project Amber Framework, without surcharge.

Momentum has been gathering with LCRIG Local Authority membership rising to 76 in last two years.  However, this may gather pace with the announcement that Reading Borough Council have joined, directly as a result of the core principles of LCRIG and Blackpool Council Project Amber Framework, and their desire to deliver a ground-breaking Carbon Neutral Surfacing Project.  Previous procurement routes involved financial uplifts through framework Contractors, sacrificing a portion of the surfacing budget and missing out on more potential carbon savings when carrying out essential maintenance.

Reading Borough Council is one of a growing number of Local Authorities committed to reducing the carbon footprint of its operations.  Miles Macadam offered to provide Reading Borough Council with a ‘Carbon Neutral’ surfacing contract and reduce the Council’s Direct and Indirect Carbon Emissions; thereby supporting their carbon reduction ambitions.  With interaction from Blackpool Council, Reading Borough Council joined LCRIG and the contract was awarded in full under the Project Amber Framework.  A result for all concerned.

Phase 1 of the contract was carried out in June and July.  The Carbon Emissions calculated and offset from this contract equated to more than 320,000 car miles and in carrying out this scheme, Reading Borough Council can show to their local taxpayers the financial and environmental benefits of sourcing through Project Amber.