02 January 2018
Telent Technology Services has been awarded a £450m contract to operate and manage the National Roads Telecommunication Service (NRTS) on behalf of Highways England.
The NRTS supports the country’s 4,400 mile strategic road network.
It connects Highways England’s seven regional control centres, national traffic operations centre and around 30,000 roadside technology assets.
The latter includes 3,327 CCTV cameras, 3,774 message signs, 229 weather stations and 7,155 SOS phones.
The network currently comprises around 6,000 miles of fibre and copper networks, 145 transmission stations and almost 5,000 roadside cabinets. Since 2005, it has been run by the GeneSYS Consortium, a public-private partnership of companies led by Fluor Corporation.
Under the new contract that will run from 16 March 2018 for seven years, Telent will take over the current NRTS and provide an end-to-end managed service from the 24-hour network operations centre at Quinton, Birmingham.
Field services will transition from the current suppliers to Telent, including current staff who will transfer under TUPE (Transfer of Undertakings [Protection of Employment] Regulations 2006).
Projects involving changes to and extensions of the network to support the government’s road investment strategy, including telecoms services supporting the rollout of smart motorways and expressways, will also transfer under the new contract.
Highways England says the new service will renew equipment and deliver a service that will provide an “open, flexible and scalable telecommunications network” to meet its future needs.
The organisation adds that it will also enable and support the development of innovative services such as connected vehicles and 5G.
Telent CEO Mark Plato says: “The scale and capability of the transformed NRTS network will be on a par with all but the very largest ISPs’ networks.”