M42 MotorwayThe government is to triple spending on roads with a £15 billion plan that will add more than 1300 miles to Britain’s road network. 

The new plan is claimed to be “the biggest upgrade to roads in a generation”.

More than 100 new schemes are confirmed by the scheme, including 84 that have not previously been announced. They include:

  • ‘Stonehenge tunnel’: £2 billion A303/A358 dualling scheme will include an underpass for the world heritage site
  • Continuous dualling of the A1 from London to within 25 miles of the Scottish border
  • £350 million to improve the A27 along the south coast
  • £300 million to improve the A47 in Norfolk
  • Smart motorway upgrade for the entire length of the M62 from Manchester to Leeds
  • Improvements to a third of all junctions on the M25

The plan will also see £1.5 billion spend on Smart motorways to improve connectivity between London, Birmingham, Manchester and Yorkshire.

The government has also committed to a £10 billion maintenance programme for the next parliament, across both the national and local road network.

‘Big, bold and far-reaching’

Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin called the scheme the “biggest, boldest and most far-reaching roads programme for decades.

“It will dramatically improve our road network and unlock Britain’s economic potential.”

Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne added: “Our plans will transform some of the country’s most important strategic routes, with ambitious plans to dual the A303, A1, A27 and the A47 as well as spending on important local infrastructures boosting productivity and helping local economies.”

9 in 10 journeys take place on roads

Despite a growth in public transport schemes, particularly in London, 90 per cent of journeys still take place on roads.

However, the investment plan will also see £100 million allocated to cycling, improving more than 200 locations across the network – with a commitment to cycle-proof any new schemes being developed.

£300 million will be spend on an environmental fund to control carbon emissions and reduce serious noise for 250,000 people.

In a big boost to EVs and plug-in hybrid cars, recharging points will also be created every 20 miles across the road network.