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Budget 2016 | Review for Cambridge-Oxford Expressway plan

The National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) has been asked to examine plans for a Oxford to Cambridge Expressway as part of new studies assigned to it in the Budget.

The first is a study of the Cambridge, Milton Keynes and Oxford corridor. The second will look at the potential for developing a 5G telecommunications network.

The Cambridge, Milton Keynes and Oxford corridor study will examine the infrastructure priorities in the area, and in particular look at ways to maximise its potential in terms of growth, jobs and housing. The area has the research hubs of Oxford and Cambridge and Milton Keynes is a centre for advanced manufacturing and logistics. The report is to be ready in time for the 2017 Autumn Statement.

Says the terms of reference for the study, contained witin the Budget documents: “The review will make recommendations to maximise the potential of the area as a single, knowledge-intensive cluster that competes on a global stage, whilst both protecting the area’s high quality environment and securing the homes, and jobs, the region needs.”

The study will take place in two stages; the first will look at the economic case for investment in the Oxford to Cambridge corridor, including the plans for the east-west rail link and the Oxford to Cambridge Expressway road link.

It will look at existing and planned investment, including improvements to the A14 and A34, to see if there are any areas of infrastructure that are holding the corridor back. Lastly it will examine growth opportunities.

University of Cambridge

University of Cambridge

The review will make recommendations to maximise the potential of the area as a single, knowledge-intensive cluster that competes on a global stage

The second stage of the work will make recommendations for the infrastructure priorities; what can be done in terms of job creation, regeneration, and links to areas outside the corridor. It will also make recommendations for developing sites for housing and business while protecting the existing environment.

The Commission will also examine how infrastructure is governed in the area, with the possibility of regional transport bodies.

The review will not cover already funded programmes.

The second study will examine how the UK can become a world leader in 5G telecommunications deployment. It will examine whether the UK has the necessary infrastructure and investments in place for this infrastructure, and how different sectors can work together for delivery and how anything that could inhibit delivery can be overcome. 

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