Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin has set out the government’s plans for transport and infrastructure.
During the Queen’s Speech yesterday (18 May), Her Majesty said that the UK will be at the forefront of technology for new forms of transport.
Speaking in the House of Commons today (19 May), Mr McLoughlin highlighted the amount of money being spent on transport infrastructure, including roads.
He said: “A Treasury report last year revealed that over £400 billion of infrastructure work is currently planned across the country. And the biggest slice of that is transport.
“Overall, transport infrastructure spending will rise by 50% this Parliament. That means we can invest £15 billion to maintain and improve our roads.
“The largest figure for a generation. £6 billion for local highways maintenance. And giving local authorities multi-year funding settlements, for the first time ever.
With an additional £250 million fund to help tackle potholes. We’re adding over 1,300 lane miles to our motorways.”
The Transport Secretary highlighted the government’s Modern Transport Bill as a way of paving the way for the technologies and transport of tomorrow.
He continued: “We are already developing a charging infrastructure for electric and hybrid vehicles.
“Now, driverless cars and commercial space flight may seem like science fiction to some. But the economic potential of these new technologies is vast. And we are determined that Britain will benefit by helping to lead their development.
“Driverless cars will come under new legislation so they can be insured under ordinary policies. These new laws will help autonomous and driverless cars become a real option for private buyers and fleets.
“The UK is already established as one of the best places in the world to research and develop these vehicles. Just as we are leading the way with real world testing to ensure cars meet emissions standards, cleaning up the air in our cities.
“Through this bill, we will strengthen our position as a leader in the intelligent mobility sector, which is currently growing by an estimated 16% a year. And which some experts have said could be worth up to £900 billion worldwide by 2025.”
You can read Mr McLoughlin’s speech in full here.