Industry Information

Urgency, hitting deadlines and rapid deployment at scale

April 20, 2023

Transport infrastructure projects come in many shapes and sizes. They affect and often combine different modes of transport and each comes with unique features and challenges.

But there’s one factor common to every scheme: deadlines must be hit or ideally improved upon.

At a macro level the Government’s Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects action plan aims to bring greater urgency to the approval of major new projects. This level of urgency needs to be matched when it comes to delivery.

The value isn’t just about proving we can do what we say we’ll do. Improving the track record of delivery against time and budget across the sector will help secure public support and funding for future projects.

Off on the right foot

Successful delivery is largely determined by what happens at the start of the project. Quickly deploying the right team with the capacity and technical skills demanded by the project is essential.

The advantage is that potential problems, clashes and bottlenecks are identified early. We can also explore more efficient solutions alongside our specialist partners.

For example, for the A46 Binley Junction improvement scheme Octavius immediately formed a specialist team to turn the outline design into detailed design and build proposals. The team  developed a design that simplified construction and saved money.

All project milestones were met and a total of £3.8m of efficiencies were achieved. Deploying Lean methods was a critical success factor.

Making the most of closures

Rapid deployment at scale is critical when there are major failures of existing assets. This can help make even better use of highly valued commodities: closures, blockades and diversions.

When disruption is inevitable – perhaps because of a significant fault or failure – rapid deployment ensures that as much is achieved as possible within the permitted window.

At Templecombe in Somerset a nine day blockade was programmed to repair a slope failure in a cutting. Further works were added when an embankment failed on the same line at Bugley Bridge.

Working collaboratively with Network Rail, Octavius decided to include station improvements at Templecombe and Sherborne. Pulling the right team together allowed all of these works to be delivered within the blockade window despite the short period of time available to design, approve and mobilise.

Assured and Safe Delivery is one of our key pillars and core values, to discover more about what this means in practice, access our resource centre or contact Mike Todd (

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