A14: Consultation launched into £1.5bn road improvement scheme
PUBLISHED: 12:24 08 April 2014 | UPDATED: 12:24 08 April 2014
Motorists using the A14 have been urged to have their say on a £1.5billion road improvement scheme during a new 10-week consultation.
The Highways Agency revealed its latest plans for the A14 on Monday, having already dropped the option of a toll following major opposition from businesses, residents and politicians last year.
The consultation offers local communities, haulage operators and other companies the chance to have further input into the proposed improvements between Cambridge and Huntingdon.
Roads minister Robert Goodwill said: “The redevelopment of the £1.5bn A14 scheme is vital to the economic development of the region, helping to support and unlock growth across the East of England.
“The new consultation is an important next step in the development process, not only for local businesses, but for residents and motorists who are subject to delays and reliability issues on a daily basis.
“I encourage anyone who uses the A14 to get online and have their say.”
Last September’s public consultation united Suffolk’s MPs, councils and motorists in strong opposition to the road toll proposals.
The campaigners celebrated victory in December when the Treasury officially confirmed there would be no toll.
Suffolk Coastal MP Dr Therese Coffey, who led the county’s MPs in their campaign against the toll, said at the time: “I am absolutely thrilled. Businesses and MPs from Suffolk have come together to oppose this toll proposal – and have made a compelling case without getting hysterical.
“In meetings with the Prime Minister and Chancellor we have made the case and I am delighted our message seems to have got across.”
Feedback from the consultation also led to a number of new improvements being included in these latest detailed plans, with improvements to Brampton, Swavesey, Bar Hill and Girton junctions.
Ian Parker, the Highways Agency’s project director for the A14 scheme, said: “This is a vital scheme that will deliver benefits for Cambridgeshire and those who regularly use the A14.”
The Agency will announce the preferred route this summer before applying to the Planning Inspectorate in the autumn.
If granted, work is due to start in late 2016.
Visit the website for details of consultation events.