Details of £600 million worth of improvements that will take place on roads in the north east by 2020 have been revealed by Highways England.
The government-owned company, which was set up earlier this year, has a five-year budget of over £11 billion to invest in England’s motorways and major A roads.
Work will begin on four new road schemes:
- A19 Testos – £70m junction improvement due to start in 2017/18. Constructing a flyover to take the A19 over the Testos junction. Entry and exit slip roads will connect the A19 to the new larger roundabout
- A19 Down Hill Lane – £40m junction improvement due to start in 2017/18.
- A1 and A19 technology enhancement – £140m of technology improvements which are anticipated to start in 2016. Currently undergoing scheme design
- A19 Norton to Wynyard – £140 to £220m, road widening project to relieve congestion. Currently assessing scheme options.
In addition to this, two major road improvements will be completed on the A1 and A19 in the next five years:
- A1 Coal House to Metro Centre – this £61m scheme began in August 2014 and will add an extra lane on a four mile stretch of the A1 between junction 67 Coal House, and junction 71 Metro Centre, providing three lanes in each direction. The number of lanes will also be increased from two to five on a third-of-a-mile section of the A1 between junction 68 at Lobley Hill and junction 69 at Gateshead Quays. This will provide a link for local road users, helping to keep traffic moving on the A1
- A19 Coast Road – this £100m scheme is due to begin in spring 2016. The A19 provides access to Port of Tyne and to major employment sites. Highways England are proposing to improve the A19/A1058 Coast Road junction by upgrading the existing roundabout to a three level interchange. The project will support regeneration in Tyne & Wear and Northumberland, reducing congestion, increasing capacity and improving journey times at the junction. Benefits will also include improving road safety and improving facilities for pedestrians and cyclists
Jeremy Bloom, Highways England’s director of major projects in the north, said:
“Drivers in the north east will see significant investment in major A roads and motorways across the region over the next five years. We’re investing £600m on delivering major improvements to the north east, starting or completing six major road schemes and carrying out further development of further four major schemes.”
Highways England Yorkshire and north east divisional director, Vanessa Gilbert, added: “In addition to the £600m of major improvements across the region it is vital that we continue to improve the existing road network as well, which is why across Yorkshire and the north east we will be spending £130m a year for the next five years on maintenance and smaller scale improvement schemes. Motorways and trunk roads form the backbone of the region’s economy and this huge investment will ensure they remain healthy for many years to come.”
Highways England will be taking forward and delivering solutions to the feasibility study carried out for the A1 North of Newcastle. Consultation with key stakeholders, traffic and environmental surveys will begin this year with construction of the A1 North of Ellingham enhancements in advance of the dualling scheme which is planned to start in 2018.
Work continues to develop three future schemes on the A1. These are A1 Morpeth to Ellingham dualling, A1 Scotswood to North Brunton and A1 Birtley to Coal House widening.