We reported a few weeks back on the downside to the planned budget changes for local authorities, however, more details on the proposed national investment have been released.
The Government has backed its promise with a £28bn budget and a six year funding guarantee, providing a guaranteed pipeline of work which future governments will not be able to reverse.
The Governments reform and funding package includes:
- 221 extra lane miles of Managed Motorways, linking existing stretches between the North West, Birmingham and London to create a new Managed Motorway Corridor.
- 52 major projects funded with funding available for further enhancements to be identified through a comprehensive review of the networks performance.
- Schemes to improve important freight routes, like the A14 and four lane capacity on the M4 from London to Reading.
- £12 billion for road maintenance over the course of the next parliament with £6 billion of this for maintenance and resurfacing 80% of our motorways and major A-roads by 2020.
- The remaining £6 billion will be spent on tackling the backlog of maintenance and reduce potholes on local roads which make up the rest of the country’s road network.
- Feasibility studies to solve problems at the most notorious hotspots on the road network at the A303 to the South West, the A1 North of Newcastle, the A1 Newcastle to Gateshead, trans-Pennine routes between Manchester and Sheffield and the A27 on the South coast.
- Faster delivery work is already underway to look at how schemes can be planned and delivered more quickly so that the benefits of these new schemes can be felt as soon as possible.
The Department for Transport said: “This funding and reform will be underpinned by legislation so future governments cannot walk away from these commitments.
It will give the construction and maintenance industry the confidence they need to recruit and train skilled workers to deliver this increase in transport projects over the coming years.”
The Government will introduce a legal framework to guarantee investment through a roads investment strategy which will come into force in 2014.