Publication - FOI/EIR release

Landscape planting works for the M73/M74/M8, programme, costs and monitoring: EIR release

Published: 25 Jan 2019

Information request and response under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004.

Published:
25 Jan 2019
Landscape planting works for the M73/M74/M8, programme, costs and monitoring: EIR release
FOI reference: FOI/18/03231  
Date received: 3 November 2018
Date responded: 9 January 2019
 
Information requested
 
1.0. What is the value of the landscape planting works ( trees , shrubs and grass areas ) for the M73/M74/M8 roadworks contract ?

2.0. What proportion of the works have been signed off as completed and paid for as of October 31st 2018 ?

3.0. What is the procedure for monitoring the standard of the landscape planting works and the number of supervisory staff carrying out these operations ?

4.0. What is the current programme for completion of the topsoiling /seeding /fencing works around the associated landscape areas along the A721, M73 , M74 and M8 roadside areas ?

5.0. What are the names of the suppliers and growers who are providing plants including trees, shrubs etc?
 
Response

 

As the information you have requested is ‘environmental information’ for the purposes of the Environmental information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRs), we are required to deal with your request under those Regulations. We are applying the exemption at section 39(2) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), so that we do not also have to deal with your request under FOISA.
This exemption is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption, because there is no public interest in dealing with the same request under two different regimes. This is essentially a technical point and has no material effect on the outcome of your request.
 
For clarity, I have provided your response to each of your five points underneath your original request.

What is the value of the landscape planting works (trees, shrubs and grass areas) for the M73/M74/M8 roadworks contract ?

I can advise the M8 M73 M74 Improvement Project operates under a Design Build Finance and Operate (DBFO) contract and therefore the amount spent on landscape planting works cannot be disaggregated from the overall cost of the project.

What proportion of the works have been signed off as completed and paid for as of October 31st 2018 ?
 
An exception under regulation 10(5)(e) of the EIRs (substantial prejudice to confidentiality of commercial information) applies to your request for what proportion of the works have been signed off as completed and paid for as of October 31st 2018. This exception applies because disclosure of this particular information would, or would be likely to, prejudice substantially the confidentiality of commercial information provided by Scottish Roads Partnership (SRP), the contractor for the project, and thus cause substantial harm to its commercial interests.

This project has not yet been completed, however the road was fully open to traffic in June 2017. The Contract Documents for the project are available on our website, in particular you may find Schedule 6, the Payment Mechanism useful, which can be accessed at the following link:

This exception is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exception. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exception. We recognise that there is a public interest in disclosing information as part of open and transparent government, and to help account for the expenditure of public money. However, there is a greater public interest in protecting the commercial interests of companies which enter into Scottish Government contracts.
 
What is the procedure for monitoring the standard of the landscape planting works and the number of supervisory staff carrying out these operations ?

Scottish Roads Partnership (SRP), the contractor for the M8 M73 M74 Motorway Improvements project are responsible for supervising the works which include the landscape planting works. The full details for this are contained within various schedules of the contract which can be accessed as follows:

SRP’s chartered landscape architect attends the project site throughout the duration of the works whilst the following works are being carried out; identification of vegetation to be protected or removed, topsoil stripping, earthworks and landscape grading, breaking out redundant surfaces, subsoil ripping, spreading of soil and peat, cultivation, preparation for seeding, preparation for planting, and planting. Further inspections of the woody plants are to be carried out early in the September after the initial planting and of the bulbs, perennials, wildflowers and aquatic plants in the April after the initial planting. Following these inspections, any missing, damaged, dead, or failing plants are to be replaced.

There are two supervisory staff who carry out these operations, a chartered Landscape Architect and a landscape clerk of works, both are employed by SRP’s contractor Amey.
The contractor operates with a robust Quality plan and Quality procedure to ensure the works are in compliance with the relevant specifications and requirements. Works are supervised and monitored continually by SRP.
Mouchel Fairhurst Joint Venture also monitor the works on behalf of Transport Scotland to ensure conformance with the contract requirements.

What is the current programme for completion of the topsoiling /seeding /fencing works around the associated landscape areas along the A721, M73 , M74 and M8 roadside areas?

The topsoiling, seeding and fencing works around the landscape areas along the A721, M73, M74 and M8 have been completed with the exception of some snagging and finishing works which are expected to be completed during the current planting season which runs from October 2018 until February 2019.

What are the names of the suppliers and growers who are providing plants including trees, shrubs etc.?

The landscaping contractor is Houston Landscaping who use Johnsons of Whixley Ltd as the supplier providing plants for the project.
 
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Please quote the FOI reference
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