Highways Team - what we do, information and news | Central Bedfordshire Council

Highways Team - what we do, information and news

Annual highways plan for 2020/21 in Central Bedfordshire

We maintain a vast network of road, over 1,400km in total, together with a large footway network. In addition to this, our highways team maintains over 220 bridges and structures, 23,000 streetlights, pedestrian crossings, drainage, traffic lights and signs along the road network. Our team also manages improvement schemes including speed limits, traffic calming measures and parking services. We also look after other public rights of way, such as footpaths and bridleways.

Our annual plan shows the numerous highways schemes we intend to implement between 2020 and 2021 including:

  • structural maintenance
  • drainage
  • street lighting
  • major schemes such as new roads
  • bridges and structures

Annual plan – types of work

You will notice in the annual plan that for carriageway works we use a number of different techniques.

Over time, road surfaces become worn out due to the volume of traffic that use them and the different extremes of weather that affect them. 

Different surface treatments are used according to all the circumstances of the road, such as the current condition, how busy the road is and the most efficient treatment for the future, how many years of good condition will result from the money spent on the treatment. 

Here is an overview to show why we use each different type of surface treatment

Carriageway – resurfacing

Resurfacing is where the existing surface is removed and a completely new surface is laid as a replacement. This treatment is used where the road is badly worn and needs to take heavy traffic and last a long time. It is expensive and slow.

Carriageway – dressing

Surface Dressing is used where the surface is in reasonably good condition, but needs some quick, overall improvement which can last up to ten years. We can cover a large area very quickly at relatively low cost. We use Surface Dressing on most of our surfacing programme.

Carriageway – restructuring

Restructuring is only used in limited areas where the road is very badly out of shape. Using the previous road surface, a durable new surface can be laid, and logistics make it easier to re-use existing materials rather than bring in new stone. It is marginally more expensive treatment per area covered than resurfacing or other treatments.

Footway – resurfacing

We resurface and reconstruct our pavements and kerbs when necessary, depending on their condition, usage and any defects. We use a variety of treatments, from applying a thin surface, such as slurry sealing, to a full reconstruction. 

View our annual plan

View or download our Highways Annual Plan.