Road improvements aim to remove bottlenecks
By: Dave Robbins
07 March 2014
Apparently the average UK commuter spends nine days every year stuck in traffic – that’s the best part of two business weeks! According to the same survey, which was featured in an article in ‘Fleet World’ magazine, congestion wastes an annual £426m in fuel alone.
All of which makes the news that the government will be investing £4.3bn in road improvement schemes during 2014 most welcome. They’re all part of a £100bn package of investment in Britain’s infrastructure over the next seven years – the largest investment programme since the 1970s. The investment is timely, as the Department for Transport (DfT) has just reported that traffic levels on UK motorways hit a new peak in 2013.
According to the DfT, the aim of the road building programme is to create a high performance road network capable of coping with the expected 43% increase in road traffic volumes between now and 2040. In total 209 schemes are due for completion this year including 178 “pinch point” schemes that tackle local bottlenecks, and 31 “major schemes” to dramatically improve key networks.
Schemes that are due to start or complete in 2014 also include: M4 J19 to 20 and M6 J5 to 8 near Birmingham, A11 Fiveways to Thetford near Norwich, M25 J23 to 27, A45 and A46 Tollbar End and M1 J19 improvements in the midlands, A23 Handcross to Warninglid near Crawley, the M3 J2 to 4a in the south east and the A1 Leeming to Barton in the north of England.
Commenting on the investment, Roads Minister Robert Goodwill said: “Roads are the lifeblood that keeps our economy going – they create jobs and help get products to markets. This government is committed to delivering the modern infrastructure we need to compete in the global race, investing across the board to cut congestion and reduce journey times in roads, rail and local transport.”
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