Such changes must be agreed with the Local Motorway Authority and applied to satisfaction. A legally binding agreement is entered into between the local authority and the developer in accordance with Section 278 of the Highways Act 1980, which is why it is called the Section 278 Agreement (S278). In Birmingham, we normally use s278 agreements to allow developers to employ a road contractor and for that contractor to work on the existing public motorway in the same way as if we, the motorway, were carrying out work. The client is responsible for all aspects of the work on the public road, from the design to the supervision of the construction and the guarantee that the work will be completed to our satisfaction. In order to make these improvements, the contracting authority must obtain the authorisation of the detailed planning of the works from the motorway authority and conclude an agreement defining the manner in which the works are to be carried out. An S278 contract is often used to allow development access to the existing road network. However, it can also be used to improve the motorway network, which is necessary as a result of development, or to contribute to future work on the wider motorway network. If the proponent submits the agreement to provide work, rather than contributing to the continuation of the work, it is responsible for organizing the work to the satisfaction of the council. If the proposed works concern the “strategic road network”, which is under the control of Highways England and not the local authority, the S278 agreement must be concluded with the Minister for Transport.
A Section 278 (or s278) agreement is a section of the Highways Act 1980 that allows developers to enter into a legal agreement with the Council (in our capacity as road authority) to make permanent modifications or improvements to a public highway as part of a planning permission. Section 278 is the part of the Highways Act 1980, which allows a motorway authority to enter into an agreement with a third party in order to obtain improvements on the existing public road. In our area, the competent motorway authority is usually Cornwall Council, but work on the A30 or A38 requires permission from Highways England, which acts on behalf of the Secretary of State for Transport. However, it is more common for the developer to entrust a contractor experienced in S278 works like FACE with motorway modifications, as if it were the authority itself that does so. It is an offence when work on the public highway is carried out without an agreement under article 278. Although the Council is constantly involved in the discussion of projects and their timing with developers, the final decision to proceed with a scheme and enter into an agreement rests with the developers, and the Council has no control over this. . . .