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HomeGovernment£8.3 billion of HS2 funding reallocated to pothole repairs and road resurfacing...

£8.3 billion of HS2 funding reallocated to pothole repairs and road resurfacing projects

A nationwide programme of pothole repairs and road resurfacing projects, with the first tranche of £8.3 billion in reallocated High Speed 2 (HS2) funding, has been revealed.

Last November, the Government announced investment to tackle badly surfaced roads and pothole-ridden streets. Councils have already been paid £150 million to get on with the work and deliver improvements, with another £150 million following in this financial year.  

As a condition of this funding, and to make sure money is being spent on pothole repairs, local authorities are required to publish a two-year plan detailing exactly which local roads will benefit.

This week, the Department for Transport has revealed 102 of the 119 authorities that received funding have responded to the department’s survey request to set out their plans, meaning local people can now check their local council’s websites and scrutinise their plans for themselves.

Among the regions pledging to resurface the highest volume of roads are the West Midlands (600,000 square metres) and East Midlands (350,000 square metres), with plans outlined for problem spots across the country including the:

  • A43 at Towcester
  • A164 between Beverley and Hessle
  • A4146 at Leighton Buzzard

Residents in areas such as Southport and Sunderland have already seen resurfacing work take place, thanks to the £150 million already invested as part of the road resurfacing funding allocations, made possible by reallocated HS2 funding.

Transport Secretary, Mark Harper, said: “We’re on the side of drivers, which is why this Government is getting on with delivering our plan to invest an additional £8.3 billion in the biggest ever funding increase for local road improvements, made possible by reallocated HS2 funding.

“Alongside this unprecedented funding, which is already being used to improve local roads, we’re making sure local people can hold their local authority to account and see for themselves how the investment will be spent to improve local roads for years to come.”

In its release, the Government says all of the £19.8 billion saved from the northern leg of HS2 will be reinvested in transport across the north, all of the £9.6 billion saved from the Midlands leg will be reinvested in transport across the Midlands, with the £6.5 billion saved through the new approach at Euston being spread across every other region in the country. Projects and improvements in the south and east of England are made possible by savings from Euston.

RAC Head of Policy, Simon Williams, said: “It’s very encouraging to see so many local authorities quickly setting out how they’ll use the first tranche of the government’s reallocated HS2 funding to improve their roads.

“Drivers will be pleased to see potholes fixed and roads resurfaced, especially as our research shows the poor state of local carriageways is their number-one concern. We hope councils will also use this extra money to carry out vital surface dressing work which helps prevent cracking in the cold winter months by sealing roads against water ingress. The prime time for this life-extending work is between April and September, so time is of the essence.”

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