The first contract sees the firm's property team appointed to provide legal services in relation to compulsory purchase to the Scottish Ministers' Executive Agency, Transport Scotland. The work includes the high profile A9 and A96 dualling programmes and will initially involve identification of land ownership and other interests.
The second contract win is the retention of the Public Local Inquiries (PLI) brief for the Scottish Ministers and UK Government (through the Office of the Advocate General), which Morton Fraser’s public sector team has held since 2012. Public Local Inquires are part of the statutory procedures that must be completed to ensure that all options for any route improvement are considered and consulted upon to minimise the impact on those living in trunk road corridors.
The PLI contract extends to cover legal support for other inquiries in which Scottish Ministers or the UK Government are involved.
Both these legal services contracts have been awarded to Morton Fraser for the next two years with the option for the Scottish Ministers to extend the contract for up to a further two years subject to satisfactory performance.
Morton Fraser’s public sector team, one of the largest in Scotland with over 80 specialists and more than 100 clients, has extensive experience of delivering such PLI services having worked on key transport improvement projects including the A9 Berriedale Braes, A77 Maybole Bypass and the A737 Dalry Bypass. The firm has worked with the Scottish and UK Governments for over a decade.
Douglas Milne, the Morton Fraser Partner who leads the PLI team, said: “We are extremely proud to retain the responsibility to support PLIs. It is a strong endorsement of the work that we have delivered over the past four years. To be able to complement that by also winning the contract to provide the title information support for Transport Scotland for delivery of these major road schemes further underlines our expertise and continued quality delivery in this area."
“Our track record in providing clear advice on public sector legal issues continues to grow. These two wins demonstrate our continued support of Scottish major transport infrastructure projects, which are strategically important to the country.”
Morton Fraser Commercial Real Estate Partner Amy Entwistle, will lead the Transport Scotland compulsory purchase land services contract.