Drivers in Cumbria are to benefit from at least £30 million worth of road improvements over the next few years with some significant improvements to the county’s motorways and major A road network over the next few months.
The £30 million represents a figure for already-planned schemes the Highways Agency is already committed to delivering - with even more investment before the end of the decade as part of the Government’s £24 billion Action for Roads programme by 2021.
Around £13.5 million will have been spent on repairs, maintenance and improvements by Easter alone. As well as an extensive maintenance programme, work to deliver economy-boosting Pinch Point projects – along the A595 at Mirehouse and along the A590 at Barrow and the M6 at Crooklands - will have been delivered, improving safety and tackling congestion around key junctions.
Large stretches of the motorway and major A road network in the county will also see safer and smoother journey improvements involving bridge and drainage repairs, replacement safety barriers, resurfacing and renewal of signs, road studs and road markings
Highways Agency North West Regional Director Alan Shepherd said:
This is really good news for road users across Cumbria because it will ultimately mean less congestion, more reliable journey times and improved safety. Record amounts are being invested in roads – that inevitably means more roadworks, but for every scheme we work on there will be an improvement for drivers.
We are well aware of how frustrating drivers find roadworks – but I would like to reassure everyone that all our work is planned very carefully to cause as little disruption as possible. Some is inevitable – and we ask for drivers’ cooperation while the improvements are carried out.
Nationally, every day some four million vehicles use roads managed by the Highways Agency, that’s one third of all traffic; and around 80 per cent of all goods travel by road, with two thirds of large goods vehicles.
Significant repair and maintenance schemes scheduled to be completed in Cumbria by the end of March include:
- More than £1 million repairing and improving drainage – and providing safe and more reliable journeys for drivers - at 2 sections of the A590 at Lindal and Witherslack.
- A further £500,000 on improving drainage along the A66 at Bassenthwaite Lake and a similar £500,000 project along the A595 near Lillyhall.
- Resurfacing work to iron out potholes and other wear and tear along the A66 at Sandford, Cockermouth and Greta Bridge (£480,000, £420,000 and £385,000 respectively) and alongside smaller schemes along the A590 and A595.
- Bridge repairs and or resurfacing to help provide safer and more reliable motorway journeys along the M6 at Tebay, Farleton (junction 36) and Catterlen (junction 41) interchanges.
Two other improvements are taking place specifically aimed at supporting local developments, relieving congestion and improving safety. They are:
- A £635,000 project to provide traffic and pedestrian signals along the A595 at its junction with the local Mirehouse Road to reduce peak-time congestion associated with Sellafield and improve safety.
- The installation, at a cost of £800,000, of variable electronic message signs at both ends of the A590 at Barrow and the M6 to give better information of incidents and congestion to drivers.
During any works drivers are advised to plan their journeys and allow more time for travel. Drivers can get up-to-the-minute travel information by phoning the Highways Agency Information Line on 0300 123 5000 or by accessing the Agency’s website. Drivers can also download the Highways Agency’s iPhone app or follow updates via Twitter at @HAtraffic_nwest.
Further information regarding current and planned roadworks in Cumbria plus neighbouring North West counties and regions can be found on the Highways Agency website.
Members of the public should contact the Highways Agency Information Line on 0300 123 5000.
Journalists should contact the Highways Agency press office on 0844 693 1448 and use the menu to speak to the most appropriate press officer.