- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
Last edited 07 Nov 2017
Section 278 agreement - works to existing highways
Section 278 of the Highways Act 1980 allows a developer to carry out works to the public highway. This is generally necessary where planning permission has been granted for a development that requires improvements to, or changes to, public highways.
- Priority junctions.
- Junctions with traffic lights.
- Right turn lanes.
- Improved facilities for pedestrians and cyclists.
- Improvements to existing junctions.
- Traffic calming measures.
The agreement may include:
- Details of the relevant planning permission.
- The agreed design.
- Details of any bond required.
- Details of who will design and manage the works.
- The programme for the works.
- Provision for inspection and certification of the works.
The developer may be responsible for designing, carrying out and paying for the works to the satisfaction of the local highway authority, or the highway authority may carry out the works. The developer may also pay for all or part of works carried out by the highway authority if they are carried out in a way, at a time, or are modified to suit the developer.
- Making the agreement.
- Agreeing the scheme for the works.
- Permissions associated with the works.
- Land acquisition associated with the works.
- Administrative expenses incurred by the highway authority.
- Maintenance of the works (commuted sums).
If the developer is carrying out the works, there may be a requirement for a bond to cover the highway authority against the possibility that the developer fails to properly complete the works, for example if they become insolvent. The bond will be released incrementally until a twelve month maintenance period has elapsed after the works are complete.
The planning application associated with the development will generally establish the principles of the works required. The highway authority cannot then refuse to enter into an agreement for the developer to undertake the approved works as long as the works meet the appropriate standards.
Section 278 Agreements are often entered into alongside Section 38 Agreements, which enable developers to ask the highway authority to ‘adopt’ new roads along with associated infrastructure such as drains, lighting and supporting structures. See Section 38 Agreement for more information.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Manual of Contract Documents for Highway Works.
- Planning condition.
- Planning obligation (Section 106 Agreement).
- Planning permission.
- Reserved matters.
- Section 38 Agreement.
- Section 50 agreement.
- Section 184 agreement.
- Section 215.
 External references.
Featured articles and news
Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) can go some way to show the impact of new buildings on their surroundings.
The shortlist for the 2018 prize for the UK's best new building is revealed.
Amendment to Bill aims to provide councils with greater powers to increase tax premiums on empty homes.
As the latest summer blockbuster 'Skyscraper' is released, we look at some of the best uses of buildings in film.
Read our introductory article on how to layout a building.
New cross-party report calls for combustible cladding ban to be extended to all high-rise residential buildings.
Dr Nicholas Falk, director of the URBED Trust, explains why metro cities are the future of urbanisation.
From next week, UK firms can bid for a share of a £12.5m fund to boost productivity, performance and quality.
A right to light generally refers to the right to receive sufficient light through an opening.
Interference and compatibility - the effects of electromagnetic fields in the workplace.