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What is a Section 278 (s278) agreement?

A section 278 agreement (or s278) is a section of the Highways Act 1980 that allows house builders/developers to enter into a legal agreement with WCC (in our capacity as the highway authority) to make permanent alterations or improvements to the public highway as part of planning.

Examples of work covered by a s278 agreement include: 

  • New access or changed access into a housing development site (a bell mouth, roundabout, signalised junction, right turn lane or a simple priority junction).
  • Installation of new traffic signals or alteration of signalised crossings or junctions close to a housing development site.

Work affecting the highway can only begin when a s278 agreement is signed by the housing developer and WCC (with a performance bond agreed). 

Find out more about performance bonds - Birmingham Council

All pre-commencement requirements listed in the s278 agreement must be met and approved by WCC.

If you start work without the necessary approval the local authority reserve the right to take legal action. The grant of technical approval is not permission to commence works.

We use s278 agreements to allow housing developers across the county to independently appoint a highway contractor to work on the existing public highway in the same way as we, the local authority, would complete the works.

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