Work to upgrade five miles of the A453 from single to dual carriageway has been completed.
The project also saw two miles of urban road through Clifton upgraded to a four lane single carriageway.
The £169 million infrastructure project was the result of the collaboration between multidisciplinary consultancy WYG, Laing O’Rourke and Highways England.
It required the construction of seven new bridge structures together with the extension of three existing bridges.
Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said: “As a resident of the East Midlands all my life, I know how important the £169 million upgrade of the A453 is to the region. It will transform journeys and help the local economy grow. This is part of our long-term economic plan to create a more reliable transport system, generate jobs, and link people with family and friends across the country.”
Highways England chief executive Jim O’Sullivan added: “It is a real privilege to see such an important scheme open in my first weeks in the job and the first to be completed by Highways England.
“This is an extremely important route, and its completion will not only bring safer and quicker journeys for everyone who uses it, but also boost the local, regional and national economy.”
The official ceremony included a naming ceremony for the A453 which will be known as “Remembrance Way” in honour of the 453 service personnel who lost their lives whilst serving in Afghanistan between 2001 and 2014.
The project has already won some significant industry awards including the Major Project Award at the Institution of Civil Engineers East-Midlands Merit Awards (EMMAs) in June, a commendation for Team Achievement at the EMMAs and an Excellent award for CEEQUAL ‘sustainability’.