The Prime Minister David Cameron has unveiled a £15 billion investment plan for the country’s roads at the Confederation of British Industry’s (CBI) annual conference in London today.
The proposals will see investment in more than 100 projects on the Strategic Road Newtork by the end of the decade, and result in hundreds of extra lane miles on the UK’s motorways and trunk roads.
By improving the condition of our roads, increasing the capacity of existing roads and taking forward major new strategic road schemes, the UK’s first ever long-term Roads Investment Strategy is designed to help boost the economy.
Cameron said: “We know to secure Britain’s future, we need world-class infrastructure. Families need it to get around; businesses need it to create jobs; we need it to compete with the world and deliver economic security.
“So whenever we have been faced with the choice between the past and the future, we have always chosen the future.
“Not just HS2 and Crossrail; but HS3, the biggest investment in our railways since the Victorian time, a new nuclear power station and tapping shale gas – we have always chosen the future.
“In three weeks’ time, you will see an Autumn Statement where we choose the future again.
“At its heart is the biggest, boldest and most far reaching road improvement programme in four decades: over 100 improvements to our major roads.
"Hundreds of extra lane miles on our motorways and trunk roads. The green light given to major projects that have been stalled for years.
“Action to improve some of the most important arteries in our country – like the A303 and the A1 – which for too long have held parts of our country back. And all underpinned by over £15bn worth of investment.
“This will be nothing less than a roads revolution – one which will lead to quicker journey times, more jobs, and businesses boosted right across the country.”
Roads being targeted include some of the most notorious and longstanding problems on the road network, which include:
• A303 to the south west
• A1 north of Newcastle
• A1 Newcastle-Gateshead western bypass
• Trans-Pennine roads in the north of England
• A47 in the east of England
• A27 on the south coast
The Government’s £15bn investment over the next Parliament (between 2015/16 to 2020/21) will be the biggest upgrade to the country’s roads in a generation. This means that over this Parliament and the next, the Government will have spent over £24bn on major roads.
Matt Dyer, managing director at LeasePlan UK, said: “Britain’s business community is reliant on the quality of our roads to successfully drive economic recovery forward.
"LeasePlan has long campaigned for more funding to be directed towards this vital part of the nation’s transport infrastructure.
"As we approach traditionally challenging winter driving conditions the Strategic Roads Network, along with other key links, is in dire need of an upgrade. Work on improvements and repairs cannot begin soon enough.
“It is my hope that, regardless of which party or parties form the next Government, this commitment to a ‘roads revolution’ will be delivered in a timely fashion to benefit thousands of driver-reliant businesses across the UK.”