AIA: Invest in local roads

The chairman of the Asphalt Industry Alliance (AIA) has called on the government to commit more investment into local roads ahead of the Autumn Statement.

Alan Mackenzie (pictured) said: “The link between infrastructure investment and economic growth is well established but long term underfunding means that the local road network continues to deteriorate at a faster rate than it can be repaired.

“Ten years ago, our Annual Local Authority Road Maintenance (ALARM) survey warned against putting off the investment needed today until tomorrow. Local authority highways engineers told us then that it would take 10.9 years to get their roads back into a reasonable condition. This year, they told us the backlog was 14 years.

The findings of this year’s ALARM survey revealed that the estimated cost to get the local road network in England and Wales back into reasonable condition is at almost £12 billion.

Mackenzie continued: “The age of the network and the increased volume and weight of vehicles – not to mention the effect of wetter winters – threatens the resilience of our roads. Unless action is taken, we face the real prospect of a local road network that is not fit for purpose.”

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