Highways England has set out how more than £150 million of investment will be spent on improving the capacity and condition of roads in Cumbria and north Lancashire.
The investment will see improvements and repairs along a series of motorways and major A roads between now and 2020.
The work is part of the government’s ‘Road Investment Strategy’ to triple levels of spending on roads by the end of the decade, which was announced last year. Transport bosses met with suppliers in Penrith to spell out the details of the schemes, which includes major improvements on the M6, M55, A585, A590, A595 and A66.
A new bypass on the A585, east of Blackpool, will remove a major bottleneck on the main road to Fleetwood while a brand new junction – junction 2 – will be created along the M55, west of Preston.
Department for Transport studies will also be carried out, looking at increasing capacity along the A66 and A69 in Cumbria.
Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said: “Roads are key to our nation’s prosperity. That’s why, as part of our long-term economic plan, we are making the biggest investment in roads in a generation.
“The £150m investment in Cumbria and north Lancashire over the next five years will significantly improve journeys and help create jobs.
“Through schemes like these, we are building the Northern Powerhouse and creating opportunities for hard working people across the nation.”
Alan Shepherd, north west regional director at Highways England, added: “The north west’s motorways and dual carriageways form the backbone for the region’s economy and this huge investment will ensure they remain healthy for many years to come.”
This year alone, more than £30m will be spent across Cumbria and north Lancashire to make journeys safer and smoother, and reduce noise for residents.
Among the maintenance improvements taking place this year are:
- M6 resurfacing north of junction 34 at Lancaster and on the southbound carriageway near Burton-in-Kendal services, and new deer fencing along the motorway
- M55 resurfacing along the eastbound carriageway at Wesham
- A66 upgrades to drainage between Lambfoot and Dubwath, east of Cockermouth, and resurfacing of the Stainburn bypass and the dual carriageway section near Crackenthorpe outside Appleby
- A585 resurfacing between Station Road and Dock Street near Fleetwood, and drainage upgrades between Mains Lane and Shard Lane near Poulton
- A590 resurfacing around the Brettargh Holt roundabout, north of the junction 36 of the M6, and a project to reduce collisions involving slow moving vehicles emerging from Foulshaw Lane near Levens
- A595 resurfacing between Blackbeck and Nursery Road, and between Blackbeck and Calder Bridge.