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The £135m Caernarfon and Bontnewydd bypass is one of the Welsh Government’s largest infrastructure projects in North Wales.

First published:
27 February 2020
Last updated:

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When completed it will deliver benefits for local communities and the travelling public. Here are some facts about the scheme.
 

1. Over 90 per cent of the workforce are Welsh or live in Wales. The contractors, Jones Bros (Ruthin) and Balfour Beatty Construction,  engaged 18 local companies to carry out subcontracted work to the value of £480,000 and currently have orders placed with 26 local suppliers. 

Photo from above of digging machines excavating the earth shaping the A487 bypass.

Photo from above of digging machines excavating the earth shaping the A487 bypass.

2. To date, 14 apprentices are on site and the project contractors have employed 13 new starters since the start of construction.  Four summer graduates were also employed to gain valuable experience assisting the site team in engineering, administration and Health and Safety roles.  

Ken Skates, Minister for North Wales with contractors and apprentices at the A487 bypass development.

Ken Skates, Minister for North Wales with contractors and apprentices at the A487 bypass development.

3. A Bronze Age canoe was unearthed by archaeologists on the site. The dug-out canoe made from a hollowed oak tree was found underneath a burnt mound dating back 3,500 years.  It was the first discovery of its kind in North Wales.  A large section of Roman road has also been excavated. 

Bronze Age canoe and Roman road found by archaeologists during work on the A487 bypass.

Bronze Age canoe and Roman road found by archaeologists during work on the A487 bypass.

4. Around 300 school children have been involved with this project to date. Groups of under 16s school pupils as part of their career planning have been on a tour and attended a site taster day.

Schools from Caernarfon and Bontnewydd contributed to road signs for the new bypass.

Schools from Caernarfon and Bontnewydd contributed to road signs for the new bypass.

5. 30 ecologists spent around 1,500 hours carried out extensive checks and searches to identify and protect wildlife during the operation.
The removal of a number of trees along the route has been necessary. However, the contactors have planted more vegetation than they removed. This includes 13 hectares of new woodland; 23Km of new hedgerows and 30 hectares of species-rich grassland. Significant measures to protect the habitat of otters, bats, water voles and fish will be implemented including installation of culverts and pipes together with the realignment of water courses.

Contractors mounted bat boxes on trees to help protect the bats’ natural habitat.

Contractors mounted bat boxes on trees to help protect the bats’ natural habitat.

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