Just as the A537 in Cheshire & Derbyshire is unceremoniously named and shamed as the most dangerous road in Britain, the Department for Transport has announced green light funds to several key areas of the country, allowing for a combined total of 24 million to be spent on improving road infrastructure.
With 16 million pounds dedicated to Leeds and a further 8 million allocated for works on Chester Road in Birmingham, the Government has invested heavily in much needed improvements.
Work is needed to tackle congestion on these regionally strategic routes; improve traffic flow and improve conditions for both pedestrians and cyclists.
Transport Minister Baroness Kramer said,
“This road carries heavy traffic creating poor access, environmental problems and a lack of reliable journey times for public transport, freight operations and private cars. These improvements will improve the network for road users; improve bus journey times and improve pedestrian and cyclist safety.
As well as relieving congestion the scheme will also help the city retain existing businesses and encouraging future investment and regeneration in the area. The £8.3 million we are putting into this scheme shows that the coalition government is serious about investing in the infrastructure the country needs to drive economic growth.”
The Birmingham scheme comprises:
- improvements to M6 Junction 5 roundabout – traffic signals and carriageway widening
- provision of a new signalised junction at Chester Road and Berrandale Road
- improvements to Chester Road and Fort Parkway roundabout – traffic signals and carriageway widening
- widening of existing dual carriageway to 3 lanes between Chester Road / Fort Parkway and Chester Road / Kingsbury Road roundabouts
- improvements to Chester Road and Kingsbury Road and to Chester Road and Tyburn Road roundabouts
The scheme was one of those given funding approval in late 2011 as part of the Spending Review process. Work can now start on the construction with the project scheduled to complete in spring 2015.
The Leeds Inner Relief Road Maintenance scheme consists of the following:
The A58M section of Leeds Inner Ring Road is of strategic importance to the Leeds City Council highway network and the economy of Leeds and the wider Leeds City Region. This work is required in order to keep the IRR open to traffic whilst a longer term strategy is developed. If work is not carried out, sections of the IRR may need to be closed to maintain public safety.
Work has already been completed on 2 of the elements – the New York Road Viaduct and Lovell Park Road Bridge. Work can now begin on the remaining element – the Woodhouse Tunnel.
The remaining works to the Woodhouse Tunnel are scheduled to start later this month with completion in March 2016. The long timescale is because the works can only be undertaken during a large number of short closures of the road if significant delay to traffic on this vital route in Leeds is to be avoided.
However, the above vast sums of money don’t cover the whole story. The governments maximum allocation of funds does not equal the total spending of each project. In the case of Leeds, total spending is estimated at 24.955 million pounds and in the case of the Birmingham scheme; 11.703 million pounds.
However, today’s announcements are a genuine green light for the schemes to either continue or commence on next stages of improvement and will come as welcome news to residents of affected areas.
Source; Department for Transport