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Wednesday 3 December 2014

Cheshire East Council Leader hails Government’s £15bn roads investment revolution


Cheshire East Council Leader Michael Jones has warmly welcomed the Chancellor’s announcement of a £15 billion ‘roads revolution’ for England.

The money will involve 100 road improvement schemes and add 1,300 new miles of extra lanes to motorways and ‘A’ roads.

The nine new projects announced for the North West alone are worth £800m and will create up to 600 construction jobs.

They include completing the extra ‘smart’ lane on the M62 from Manchester to Leeds, improvements to Junctions 19 and 22 of the M6 (in addition to the improvements at Junction 16 and the introduction of extra ‘smart’ lanes between Junctions 16 to 19), a new Junction 11a on the M56 and better links into the Port of Liverpool.

Welcoming the announcement today, Councillor Jones said: “This is fantastic news for the North West and the entire country.

“World-class transport links – new and better roads and improved rail connectivity via HS2 – are absolutely crucial to unlocking jobs and the economic potential of Cheshire East and the North as a whole.

“It invigorates communities and gives people more opportunities to get on in life.

“Better connectivity is also critical towards helping ensure that the North West develops as an economic powerhouse and gives a real boost to the nation’s prosperity.

“Tackling congestion and fixing some of the most notorious and longstanding problem areas on the network are crucial. When 90 per cent of journeys are taking place on our nation’s roads this work is vital to help people get on and get around.”

Cheshire East will be working with the Government and the Highways Agency to make sure we secure improved motorway junction solutions on the network in the Borough.

Nationally, 84 new projects were announced today. The Government says the £15bn will be spent over the next five years.

The plans are part of the Chancellor's Autumn Statement, to be announced in full tomorrow (Wednesday).

Announcing the plan yesterday, Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said roads were ‘key to our nation's prosperity’ and had suffered from under-investment for too long.

He added: “This Government has a long-term plan to secure the country’s future and this £15bn roads programme is demonstration of that. Better roads allow us to travel freely, creating jobs and opportunities, benefiting hardworking families across the country.”

Chancellor George Osborne said the investment announced would ‘transform some of the country's most important strategic routes’.

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