The Department for Transport (DfT) has announced that a raft of road schemes have been given the go ahead with £100m and put into immediate construction.
The schemes draw investment from the National Roads Fund, which ringfences vehicle excise duty cash from 2020-2025, allocating £25.3bn to Highways England's second road investment strategy (RIS 2) and £3.5bn to the major road network and large local majors.
Chancellor Sajid Javid announced that the A66 Trans-Pennine expressway and the A46 Newark bypass will be made fully dual carriageway under RIS 2.
Improvements to the M60 Simister Island interchange in Manchester and widening the A12 were also announced, along with upgrades to the A428 between Cambridge and Milton Keynes.
The DfT revealed that four schemes have been approved for construction under local bids, under a £100m first round:
- £31m for the Preston western distributor scheme (pictured): a new dual carriageway link between the M55 and the A583 is designed to improve travel between the enterprise zone at Warton and the Springfields nuclear facility at Salwick, as well as reduce congestion in Preston and directly lead to the creation of 3,575 houses and the creation of over 500 jobs. Through the Lancashire County Council funded link road, a further 1,745 houses will also be built.
- £25.5m for the Stubbington bypass: a new 3.5km single carriageway road aims to improve the environment in the village with the removal of traffic as well as improve access to development sites in Gosport.
- £22.5m for the White Hart junction: improving the intersection between the A419 and A420 to the east of Swindon, which aims to benefit existing users of the junction and help unlock development of the New Eastern Villages site which includes over 8,650 dwellings and 40 hectares of employment land. By itself, the White Hart junction scheme will facilitate the development of 799 dwellings.
- £22.9m for the Wichelstowe southern access scheme: construction of an access road to the Wichelstowe development site under the M4 motorway which will unlock an additional 2,500 residential units on top of the currently permitted 2000 units.
Seven other schemes will be awarded funding to develop their business cases and a further seven have been given approval to proceed and to apply for funding at a later stage.
This is the first wave of funding to be announced under the current major road network and large local majors programme, with further rounds to be announced in the next few months, the DfT said.
Schemes at strategic outline business case which have been awarded development funding:
- Tyne Bridge and Central motorway renewal
- A38 Bromsgrove route enhancement programme
- A511 growth corridor (Leicestershire)
- A38 – (Bristol Airport access improvement)
- A38 Manadon interchange (Plymouth)
- A374/A386/A3064 Plymouth MRN phase 1
- A140 Long Stratton bypass
Schemes given approval to proceed to the next stage:
- A1079 improvement – East Riding of Yorkshire
- Isham bypass, Northamptonshire
- A28 Birchington, Acol and Westgate-on-Sea relief road
- Southampton West Quay road realignment
- A146 Barnby bends
- Lombard roundabout (Croydon)
- A13 Lodge Lane (Dagenham)