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A1 Motorway

Environmental aspects

The A1 runs through a unique natural environment and blending the motorway with the existing terrain has been a key priority.

Two sections of Phase II of the A1 Motorway projects are located directly in Natura 2000-protected areas of the Vistula River. To deal with this the project undertook a detailed wildlife inventory that included rare plants and animals, birds' corridors, and animal routes.

Because some of the road's sections cut across the migration routes of numerous animal species, we have equipped it with special underpasses and culverts to allow deer, amphibians, reptiles, and small mammals to pass. We've also installed a number of new stork nesting platforms on or near farm buildings in local communities and helped stork couples to move.

In total, on Phase 1 we have sown or planted more than 127 hectares of grass, 2,725 deciduous trees, 837 conifers, 32,615 leaf shrubs and 248 creepers. In addition to tall trees that will 'conceal' the A1 in the landscape, a selection of large-leaf plants will also limit the spread of air pollution and noise. As spring arrives, the road turns green.

Natura 2000

Natura 2000 is a network of protected areas set up to ensure the survival of Europe's most valuable species and habitats. It comprises over 18,000 sites, covers around 17.5% of the territory of the 'old' 15 EU member states (an area almost as large as France) and is now being extended to the new member states.

Two sections of Phase II of the A1 Motorway projects are located directly in Natura 2000-protected areas of the Vistula River. To deal with this the project undertook a detailed wildlife inventory that included rare plants and animals, birds' corridors, and animal routes.

The data we gathered was used to satisfy the EU regulations covering Natura 2000 and was important evidence at public consultations in the area, as well as helping us to site animal routes and care for the wildlife. We also transferred rare plants from the site to botanical gardens and scientific institutes. All this work drove forward the environmental impact reassessment process that enabled our construction colleagues to secure the relevant permits for Phase II.

During construction itself, we are monitoring environmental factors extensively and taking special precautions over any installation or plant within and close to the borders of Natura 2000.

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