Global infrastructure services firm AECOM has launched a digital version of the Environmental Statement it prepared for Highways England’s A303 Amesbury to Berwick Down (Stonehenge) project.
Claimed to be the UK’s first purpose-built digital Environmental Statement, AECOM say it transforms the way complex environmental data, information and assessments are presented and shared with stakeholders.
Combining reports, spatial data and visualisations, the digital Environmental Statement integrates over 250 documents and 7,000-pages of the original Environmental Statement to create an interactive and intuitive platform that allows the user to navigate their own way through the full package of environmental information. It makes large amounts of complex project information more accessible and easier to navigate and understand.
Ross Stewart, principal environmental scientist, AECOM, said: “With stakeholders often struggling to properly engage with Environmental Statements and other technical materials for major infrastructure projects in their traditional formats, creating new ways of communicating complex environmental information will be key to enhancing the consultation process for big projects. Long-term, digital formats will become the primary mechanism for both stakeholder engagement and decision-making. The purpose-made digital Environmental Statement for the A303 Amesbury to Berwick Down project paves the way for digital delivery on future projects.”
Derek Parody, Highways England A303 Amesbury to Berwick Down project director, said: “We always aim to ensure that all information we provide is accessible and easy to understand, and seek innovative ways to deliver this. The Environmental Statement is a considerable amount of information that forms part of our Development Consent Order application. We’re proud to see this undergoing a digital transformation to make it more user-friendly for all.”
AECOM plans to roll out a formal digital Environmental Statement service later this year, as it continues to digitally transform its environmental consultancy work.
The proposed A303 Amesbury to Berwick Down scheme will upgrade a stretch of the A303 from single to dual carriageway, including a new tunnel to remove traffic from most of the iconic Stonehenge World Heritage Site landscape. The scheme will help to unlock economic growth in the South West by improving journey reliability, increasing safety and improving connectivity with neighbouring regions. The project is currently in the six-month examination period following submission of the Development Consent Order application.