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Cash for 76 road schemes, but Highways England revises others

NCE stock roads

Transport secretary Chris Grayling has announced a £345.3M funding package for local roads and public transport, at the same time as Highways England publishes its revised delivery plan for 2017/8 putting some schemes on the back burner.

The £345.3M package announced by Grayling includes £244M for 76 projects across the country. Two major roads in Middlewich, Cheshire, and Worcester in the Midlands will receive £101M funding. In Worcester £54.5M is for the Southern Relief Road, including a new carriageway alongside the existing Carrington Bridge, against a total cost of £62M. A fund of £46.8M is available for the Middlewich Eastern Bypass against a total cost of £56.9M.

See the map of successful schemes here.

Grayling said: “These schemes will provide much needed upgrades to essential local roads up and down the country, cutting congestion, improving safety and shortening journey times for drivers.

“They will also help boost regional economic growth by unlocking jobs and supporting vital new housing development.”

The money for the 76 schemes from the National Productivity Investment Fund during 2018/19 and 2019/20 and the Large Local Majors fund.

The announcement comes as Grayling confirms he has agreed revisions to Highways England’s delivery plan for 2017/8. The updated delivery plan includes 10 schemes brought forward, 16 put back and eight which have been halted, some for review (see box below). Highways England said the reasoning behind the schemes being put back is better planning of roadworks, so motorists don’t have too many at the same time.

Talking about the supplementary Highways England delivery plan published today, its chief executive Jim O’Sullivan said: “Our update today is a sensible and responsible way to deliver major national investment in road infrastructure. It will keep our roads moving, deliver a lasting legacy for the country and ensure best value for money for the taxpayer.”

Highways England’s 2017/8 supplementary delivery plan

The 10 schemes being brought forward are:

  • A19 Testos 
  • A19 Downhill Lane
  • M56 junctions 6 to 8 smart motorway
  • M6 junctions 21a to 26 smart motorway
  • M6 junction 22 upgrade
  • A500 Etruria
  • M6 junction 10 
  • M4 Heathrow Slips 
  • A47 Acle Straight – small scale improvement 
  • A47 and A12 junction enhancement

The 16 schemes being re-scheduled are: 

  • A5 Dodwells to Longshoot widening
  • M3 junction 9 improvement 
  • A31 Ringwood
  • M27 junctions 4 to 11
  • A47 North Tuddenham to Easton
  • A47 Blofield to North Burlingham dualling 
  • M25 junction 25 improvement
  • M25 junction 28 improvement 
  • A1 Birtley to Coal House 
  • M60 junctions 24 to 27 and junctions 1 to 4 smart motorway
  • A47/A11 Thickthorn 
  • A47 Wansford to Sutton 
  • A47 Guyhirn Junction
  • A12 Chelmsford to A120 widening
  • M25 junction 10/A3 Wisley interchange
  • M25 junctions 10 to16  

Schemes which require further development and have been paused for further review and consideration for the next Road Investment Strategy (RIS):

  • A1 & A19 Technology enhancements 
  • M11 junctions 8 to 14 technology upgrade
  • A12 whole-route technology upgrade
  • M53 junctions 5 to 11 smart motorway 
  • A14 Junction 10a
  • M62/ M606 Chain Bar  

Highways England said the M5 Bridgwater junction improvements and A50 Uttoxeter Project B growth corridor project needed revising to achieve value for money. 

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