The cost of work to widen the Kent Elms junction has risen once more... taking the total cost to more than £8.9million.

Southend Council is set to approve a further budget of £1.371m to be added to the capital investment programme for 2019/20.


Spiralling costs - the junction

A further £40,000 is being allocated for 2020/21. despite the work finishing with the completion of the footbridge which is yet to open.

According to council documents, the extra funding is to be financed by additional borrowing.

The authority originally set aside £6.5million on the project to widen the A127 junction to three lanes on both sides of the carriageway.

Ron Woodley, councillor responsible for transport, capital and inward investment, said: “The capital outturn report details the delivery of projects for 2018/19 and relevant budget carry forwards into 2019/20 and beyond.

“In regards to Kent Elms, the well-documented utility delays have inevitably led to a project overspend. Whilst the majority of the project has been externally funded (£5.6m), the council has needed to increase its own capital contribution to the project from £0.9m to £3.346m. Recovery of costs action will be considered against the utility companies where relevant.”

Mr Woodley added: “The anticipated final outturn of the project is £8.946m, of which £5.6m has been funded externally. As part of this, £40,000 has also been budgeted for 2020/21 for the necessary completion audits and also surveys to review the impact the junction improvement works have had on traffic, pedestrians and air quality.”

Work on the junction had initially been scheduled to finish by late spring 2017 but was dogged by severe delays which were caused over blunders by utility companies diverting pipes and cables.