AN EXTENSION to the Bradford to Leeds cycle superhighway is one of the projects that has been thrown into doubt after construction giant Carillion went into liquidation.

The company, which employs 20,000 workers and has offices in Leeds, announced that it had “no choice but to take steps to enter into compulsory liquidation with immediate effect” after talks failed to find another way to deal with its debts.

In November Carillion began work on a multi-million pound extension to the Leeds-Bradford cycle superhighway.

The £7.9m project aims to create segregated cycle routes on key roads through the city centre and links into the existing superhighway which covers 14km between the two cities.

Carillion is also a key supplier to the Government and has contracts in the rail industry, education and NHS. The firm was also recently awarded the first phase contract to construct the £115m East Leeds orbital road.

Tom Riordan, Leeds City Council’s chief executive, said they were looking at the impact of Carillion’s announcement on the council and city.

“We know Carillion’s situation is not just affecting Leeds, and we are liaising with central Government to see how we can help ensure services and contracts are still delivered successfully. We have been monitoring Carillion’s situation and planning accordingly and are now implementing those plans.” He added that a final contract had not been signed off for the orbital route and that contingency plans were in place as they had been monitoring the situation.

Philip Green, chairman of Carillion, said: “We have been unable to secure the funding to support our business plan and it is therefore with the deepest regret that we have arrived at this decision.”

In 2010 Bradford Council paid out £825,000 to the firm in a settlement after a dispute over the collapse of a £1.2 billion deal to run 600 key council buildings. A Bradford Council spokesperson said: “We have no current contracts with Carillion.”