Ground works have begun at the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) site at Ashchurch, Tewkesbury, under the Vehicle Storage Support Programme (VSSP), the MoD’s Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO) announced on 1 March 2023.
The VSSP is a two-phase programme that will deliver modern, sustainable, and effective storage and maintenance solutions for the British Army’s vehicle and equipment fleet. It will provide controlled humidity environment (CHE) storage for 4,100 vehicles, reducing maintenance costs and unnecessary deterioration caused by extreme drops or rises in temperature, improving the operational readiness of the British Army’s vehicle fleet.
At the site structural piles have been already been inserted to form the base of the first of a number of new workshops, while demolition of old structures to facilitate the site’s regeneration is continuing apace.
A GBP 259 M contract to deliver the VSSP was awarded by the DIO to Skanska UK in May 2022. As well as providing CHE storage for military vehicles, VSSP will also provide dedicated inspection and maintenance spaces.
“All buildings will adhere to the latest sustainability standards and reaching Defence Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (DREEAM) Excellent is the sustainability target for the programme,” the DIO stated. “Solar installation on site will also generate green energy.”
Following a recent visit to the Ashchurch site, Belinda Lunn, Senior Responsible Owner for VSSP, was quoted as saying in the DIO’s 1 March press release, “I am delighted to see first-hand the impressive progress on site since the start of works in September 2022. Seeing the foundations being prepared is an important milestone and means that we remain on target to have a state-of-the-art storage facility in Ashchurch. Sustainable construction methods will also support the army’s contribution to Net Zero targets for Defence.”
All construction activity is expected to be complete by 2027.