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Autostrade per l’Italia and its subsidiaries are carrying out a major investment plan to develop and modernize the highway network.

Works approval procedure

In accordance with current legislation, implementation of the investment plan entails long and complex environmental and urban planning approval phase on the part of the relevant ministries and authorities, even for simple lane widening works.  The approval process can last a number of years (e.g. more than 8 years in the case of the Variante di Valico) and can be broken down as follows. for most works in progress:

PHASE 1 PREPARATION OF THE PRELIMINARY DESIGN
undertaken by Autostrade per l'Italia

The preliminary design defines the preliminary implementation lines and feasibility of the intervention, while taking into account the environmental and traffic constraints imposed by existing urban planning instruments

PHASE 2 CHECKING OF THE PRELIMINARY DESIGN
undertaken by Autostrade per l'Italia

For work with value equal to or greater than €20 million, the Preliminary Design is checked, within the meaning of article 47 of Presidential Decree 207/2010, by the accredited technical unit of Autostrade per l'Italia, in its capacity as type B inspection body pursuant to European UNI CEI EN ISO/IEC 17020 standard.

PHASE 3 INCLUSION OF THE PROJECT IN THE CONCESSION CONVENTION
undertaken by Autostrade per l'Italia and the
Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport

The preliminary design, with the envisaged expenses, is included in a Contract Addendum to the Convention approved by the Ministry. The addendum must be approved by virtue of a decree issued by the competent ministers and recorded by the Court of Auditors. The initial expenditure and completion time forecasts are subject to change during the approval process as a result of approval delays, prescriptions (requests for design changes), etc.
The 2008 Single Convention envisages Autostrade per l'Italia commitment to develop the preliminary design of expansion interventions for its network, which are specifically identified in the Convention. In the event of the approval of the final designs for the above interventions, the Ministry and Autostrade per l'Italia shall enter into a convention to include such interventions in the convention itself and to set out the economic and financial cover for the relevant investments.

PHASE 4 PREPARATION OF THE FINAL DESIGN
undertaken by Autostrade per l'Italia

The Final Design is accompanied by an Environmental Impact Study and is discussed with the local authorities so as to ascertain the need to integrate requests and suggestions and agree on local interventions.

PHASE 5 CHECKING OF THE FINAL DESIGN
undertaken by Autostrade per l'Italia

For work with value equal to or greater than €20 million, the Final Design is checked, within the meaning of the article 47 of Presidential Decree 207/2010, by the accredited technical unit of Autostrade per Italia, in its capacity as type B inspection body pursuant to European UNI CEI EN ISO/IEC 17020 standard.

PHASE 6 TECHNICAL VALIDATION
undertaken by Autostrade per l'Italia

The final design receives Technical Validation from the Ministry which confirms project compliance with regulations and with Autostrade per l'Italia contractual obligations.

PHASE 7 ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT ASSESSMENT (E.I.A)
undertaken by the Ministry of the Environment,
Land and Sea and the Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities

The Final Design is supplemented on receipt of EIA and Services Conference procedural prescriptions.

PHASE 8 SERVICES CONFERENCES (S.C.)
arranged by the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport

The Services Conference brings together all the authorities authorised to issue project approvals: the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure, the Ministry of the Environment, Land and Sea, the Ministry of Cultural Heritage, the Ministry of Defence, the Regions, the Provinces, the Municipalities, the Consortia of Mountain Communities, the Basin Authorities, the Regional Prevention and Environment agencies and individual firms (e.g. Enel, RFI), etc. The Services Conference approves the work on the basis of the main positions formulated; in the event of the disagreement of the Region or the Central Government, responsible for environmental, landscape and territorial protection of the historical and artistic heritage and for health and public safety, approval is referred to the Council of Ministers. Design changes are often requested. Such changes require the approval process to be recommenced from the Final Design preparation phase.

PHASE 9 INTEGRATION OF THE FINAL DESIGN
undertaken by Autostrade per l'Italia

The Final Design is supplemented on receipt of EIA and Services Conference procedural prescriptions.

PHASE 10 APPROVAL OF THE FINAL DESIGN
provided by the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure

The project is subject to Ministerial approval: the Ministry declares the work to be "of public utility" for the purposes of compulsory purchase orders for the areas affected by the works.

PHASE 11 PREPARATION OF THE WORKING PLAN
undertaken by Autostrade per l'Italia

Regulatory changes can sometimes require design updates and certain approval procedures to be repeated.

PHASE 12 CHECKING OF THE WORKING PLAN
undertaken by Autostrade per l'Italia

If the value of the work is equal to or greater than €20 million, the Working Plan is checked, within the meaning of article 47 of Presidential Decree 207/2010, by the accredited technical unit of Autostrade per l'Italia, in its capacity as type B inspection body pursuant to European UNI CEI EN ISO/IEC 17020 standard.

PHASE 13 APPROVAL OF THE WORKING PLAN
provided by the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport

The working plan is subject to Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport approval. Award of contract takes place once approval has been granted (1)(2)

PHASE 14 AWARD OF CONTRACT

Award of contract takes place once approval has been granted. In accordance with current legislation, Autostrade per l'Italia must award at least 40% (60% from 2014)(3) of the work pursuant to the concession by public invitation to tender, issued by ad hoc, Ministry-appointed committees, while the remaining work can be assigned directly to its subsidiaries/affiliates.

PHASE 15 DELIVERY AND EXECUTION OF THE WORK
on the part of the contractor. Autostrade per l'Italia oversight of the work

The Project moves into its implementation phase: supply contracts are signed, roadworks are set up and work commences. Additional permits are also required in this phase (e.g. field and roadwork permits, etc.). Roadworks are subject to ministerial supervision and to Guarantee Committee and Observatory oversight, where established.

PHASE 16 OPENING TO TRAFFIC

The highway stretch affected by the work is opened to traffic on receipt of a certificate of compliance from the Ministry.

1 INTEGRATED TENDER
In some cases, the integrated tender procedure requires an undertaking, on the part of the Contractor, to both draw up the Working Plan and consequently perform the work.
In this event, the Working Plan must nevertheless be granted Ministerial approval before commencement of the work
2 LIBERALISATION DECREE (Law  27/2012)
Autostrade per l'Italia has the option of approving a more detailed project with respect to the project envisaged at the procedural phase and of simultaneously obtaining Ministerial approval for the final design and working plan.