The UK Government has sanctioned around £55m for the construction of the fourth phase of the Worcester Southern Link Road project.

Once complete, the £62m dual carriageway project is expected to halve peak journey times along the A4440, while leading to the building of 5,600 homes.

As part of the project, contractor Alun Griffiths will build a dual carriageway alongside the existing Carrington Bridge.

Under an early contractor involvement contract, Alun Griffiths has been working on the project’s fourth phase.

The bridge is intended to help decongest the route while increasing jobs and strengthening economic growth in areas such as Great Malvern by transforming access to the M5.

Alongside improving access to Birmingham International Airport and Worcestershire Parkway Station, the new road will facilitate better journeys for travellers and support the creation of over 6,000 jobs.

UK Roads Minister Jesse Norman said: “The government is investing record amounts to improve journeys in our towns and cities, boosting local economies.

"This new road will help improve everyday journeys in and around Worcester."

“This new road will help improve everyday journeys in and around Worcester, easing traffic for local people in Worcestershire and Herefordshire, as well as supporting thousands of new homes and jobs.”

The dual carriageway will connect the M5 to the west of Worcestershire and Herefordshire, and offer a bypass to Worcester city centre.

The bypass is expected to help improve the quality of air, as well as include construction of two new bridges and a new cycle and pedestrian routes as well as improvements to junctions.

Worcestershire County Council cabinet member Councillor Ken Pollock said: “This is great news for Worcestershire. We welcome this announcement of funding approval which paves the way for the final phase of the scheme to fully dual the Southern Link Road from the M5 to the Powick Roundabout.

“Works on this important and much needed final phase will see Carrington Bridge extended and 1.5km of viaduct being built between the Ketch and Powick roundabouts.”

From the £62m, Worcestershire County Council is providing £7.5m. The government will issue £55m from the Large Local Majors Fund.