UK Government unveils £6.1bn programme to upgrade major roads and motorways


The Government of UK has revealed details about its £6.1bn road improvements programme as part of its £23bn upgrade to the road network in England. 

The road improvement programme is intended to result in reduced journey times, decreased traffic congestion, creation of better local road connectivity, and improved passenger journeys. 

Over the next six months, the government is planning to perform improvement works on 55 roads across the country, including opening eight schemes, consulting on ten schemes and publishing final plans for another 29 schemes.

As part of the road improvement programme, a new A19 Downhill Lane junction will be created in order to support the new international manufacturing park by increasing road capacity, easing traffic and improving safety of the users.

UK Transport Minister Jesse Norman said: “Road users across England should soon be seeing the benefits of these improvements in their daily lives, which are designed to link people better with their jobs, friends, family and local amenities, as well as connecting businesses with customers.

“Over the next six months, we expect to roll-out our vital upgrade plan, taking next steps on £6.1bn-worth of schemes and seeking to hear from local people, organisations and businesses to help shape our plans and ensure they benefit local communities.

“And shortly, I also plan to announce the winners of the 2017 to 2018 highways maintenance challenge fund, where the government will be investing £75m to improve smaller local roads including through resurfacing, filling potholes and other infrastructure projects.” 

The road upgrade programmes will include road capacity enhancements on certain sections of the A1 in Northumberland, which would reduce journey times, supports economic growth and improve access to and from the county. 

The government also intends to increase road capacity at the A12 Colchester Bypass in order to reduce delays, as well as construction of a new strategic corridor to the south-west via the A303 to improve journey times to enhance the world heritage site.

In addition, the government plans to improve junction 19 on the M6 and an upgrade to the link between the port of Liverpool and the motorway network. 

"Road users across England should soon be seeing the benefits of these improvements in their daily lives."

The announcements made by the government will provide a platform for them to implement schemes that were announced in 2014 as part of road investment strategy. 

It also underlines how £15.2bn will be invested in strategic roads between 2015 and 2021 across the UK. 

The schemes will be implemented by Highways England. 

Highways England chief executive Jim O’Sullivan said: "Highways England is committed to delivering the government’s investment programme to improve the strategic road network.

"These milestones are critical elements of our current work and we are extremely pleased that we are on track to deliver them."


Image: The UK Government published details about its £6.1bn road improvements programme as part of its £23bn upgrade to the road network in England. Photo: courtesy of Crown copyright.