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Blair promise to resurface A30 in doubt

RESIDENTS LIVING on a noisy 8km section of the A30 between Straightway Head and Sowton in Devon fear the Government will delay the promised replacement of the concrete carriageway with quieter asphalt.

They have learned that the project will have to compete for funds against other anti-noise resurfacing jobs, following a Government pledge to relay 60% of the trunk road network with quieter surfacing.

Prime minister Tony Blair promised to have the road resurfaced during a visit to Devon last summer.

But just before Christmas the Highways Agency announced the work will have to compete with some 70 schemes covering 4,000km of England's trunk road network under the 10 year transport plan.

Tests carried out by the Highways Agency last April showed traffic on the A30's concrete surface produces almost twice the noise of an asphalt surface.

The Highways Agency has given local authorities until 23 March to apply for resurfacing funding, after which the resurfacing works will be prioritised.

The aim will be to ensure the noisiest sites affecting most people will be tackled first.

It is likely that the A30 scheme will have to compete against projects in more densely populated areas. These include sections of the M25, M42, M5 and A1.

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