The Government has announced £175m ‘to improve the 50 most dangerous roads in the country’.
The A588 in Lancashire, the A529 in Shropshire and the A18 in Lincolnshire are all in line for cash to improve their safety the Department for Transport suggested, adding that it will be inviting proposals from local authorities responsible for the 50 highest risk roads.
Transport secretary Chris Grayling unveiled the safety fund as he gave further details of the £1.3bn additional funding for roads announced in the Autumn Statement, which includes a £925m pot local highways authorities can bid for.
The transport secretary, Chris Grayling
On the same day he visited Cambridgeshire to witness the start of the £1.5bn A14 upgrade, Chris Grayling made written statement to Parliament, which said the money was ‘on top of the £6bn the Government is already allocating to councils in England up to 2021’.
He also said £70m would be allocated in 2017/18 from the £250m pothole fund previously announced and gave the go ahead for the Lincoln Eastern Bypass, with £50m of Government funding.
Mr Grayling said that ‘following the confirmation of the National Roads Fund’ the Government was publishing reports on five strategic studies into improvements on the national road network, with ministers committing to three of these schemes.
In addition to new Oxford - Milton Keynes - Cambridge expressway, the A66 will be upgraded to dual carriageway and the M60 around Manchester will be improved.
In respect of studies into further upgrading of the A1 and building a trans-Pennine tunnel, Mr Grayling said ‘further economic analysis is to follow, with particular reference to emerging housing plans, before taking decisions on next steps’.
Officials said the £175m safety cash was on top of the £1m pledged earlier this month to improve the A285 in West Sussex.
A spokesman for the Department for Transport (DfT) told Transport Network that so far no formal application process has been established. The DfT will be liaising with authorities responsible for the 50 most dangerous roads, although it will for councils to come up with improvement proposals.
The roads were identified by a recent report from the Road Safety Foundation, which was based on data from the European Road Assessment Programme (EuroRAP).
The six further local major schemes that will have financial backing from the DfT to develop a business case are:
- a new Tees crossing
- dualling the A500 in Cheshire
- Coventry South Link Road
- Melton Mowbray Eastern Distributor road
- Sheffield Innovation Corridor
- Manchester Metrolink Airport link
The DfT has published a document setting out details of the spending pledges, including councils’ allocations under the pothole fund.
The document also names two projects on the A69 that will receive funding under the £220m Highways England Strategic Roads Pinch Point Fund, with further details to be announced in due course.