The Welsh Government has told an enquiry that a new M4 relief road around Newport will help bring an end to traffic problems on the motorway.
The South Wales Argus quotes Morag Ellis, representing the Welsh Government, telling a public inquiry today that the scheme would bring the motorway between Magor and Castelton up to modern standards and bring economic benefits to South East Wales.
The proposed new motorway would be 23km and consist of six lanes, departing from the existing M4 at junction 23A, passing across a new River Usk bridge to connect with the existing junction at Castleton, junction 29.
At the moment the motorway suffers a major pinch point at the Brynglas Tunnels where the traffic has to funnel into two lanes in each direction with junctions either side.
The website quotes Ms Ellis saying the scheme is of “profound importance” for Wales and would bring economic benefits to the area, “The existing M4 around Newport is not fit for purpose. That has been the conclusion of the Welsh Government for a long time.
“The consequence of a serious incident is that the wider road network, in particular in Newport, becomes at best clogged up, at worst gridlocked.”
She added: “There is a significant problem which is only going to get worse and the scheme provides a solution which is good value for money.”
Opponents argue the scheme is too expensive, would harm the Gwent Levels and that there are better alternatives.