‘Tarmacademy’ plan for Liverpool

Highways Reporters

Civil engineers King Construction hope to train 1,000 people over the next five years at a ‘Tarmacademy’ in Liverpool.

The centre, which would be the first of its type in the north west, would train unemployed people in road laying.

According to a report in the Liverpool Express, the aim is to tackle a shortage of qualified staff with the necessary skills to take advantage of an estimated £250 million of highways work taking place in the city over the next few years.

Under the plans, tarmac company Cemex would also build an asphalt plant on the same site.

Trainees will be able to work towards qualifications such as an NVQ in highways skills and reinstatement.

A report to Liverpool City Council’s Cabinet on Friday 11 December is recommending the authority supports the firm to find a suitable site close to North Liverpool Docks on a 20 year lease which would provide training, apprenticeship and employment opportunities.

Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson said: “This is a really exciting and innovative opportunity for us to partner with the private sector and come up with a scheme which will get a significant number of people into work.

“There are around a quarter of a billion pounds of major highways infrastructure projects in the pipeline in the next few years as we tackle the backlog of road repairs and invest in improvements to the network. We must make sure that people from the city are best placed to get work on these projects.

“By creating an asphalt factory in the city we will also be helping the environment by making sure that the raw materials can be made ‘road ready’ on site rather than being transported to Manchester and back.”

An additional 25 jobs for trainers and administrators would be created while the Cemex plant would employ 20 people.

If the Cabinet approve the report, the next stage would be to identify a suitable site and agree lease arrangements.
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