News story

Corridor announced to unlock full potential of England's economic heartland

Corridor B chosen for the Oxford to Cambridge Expressway.

Ariel picture of a roundabout.

A plan to link together fast-growing technology hotspots took a further step closer to fruition today (12 September 2018) as Roads Minister Jesse Norman announced the chosen central corridor for the Oxford to Cambridge Expressway.

After detailed scrutiny and review by Highways England, of the 3 options A, B and C, Corridor B was judged to offer greater benefits to the region – outperforming the other options by providing better links to jobs, education, leisure and health services.

The expressway, with options to pass either west or east of Oxford, is also expected to take up to 40 minutes off the journey between the A34 south of Oxford and the M1.

Picture of the proposed corridor route.

Building the new link close to the east/west rail link will also offer more options for the commercial development of up to 1 million new homes, in line with proposals by the National Infrastructure Commission, and encourage more people to travel by train rather than by cars.

Roads Minister Jesse Norman said:

The government is taking the big decisions on infrastructure, working to maximise growth and productivity across the UK.

England’s economic heartland, as it has been called, already plays a crucial role in powering the UK’s growth, science and innovation, but there is no single route to connect Oxford and Cambridge.

This expressway will enhance both transport connectivity and growth across the region for the benefit of the UK as a whole.

Infographic showing benefits of the Oxford to Cambridge Expressway.

The Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, Robert Jenrick, said:

The Oxford to Cambridge arc is one of the greatest opportunities for economic growth in Europe. We want to realise that potential by investing in the new infrastructure the area needs and the Oxford to Cambridge Expressway is an important part of our plan.

The Expressway will provide a link between 2 of the country’s intellectual powerhouses and open up vital jobs, skills and housing opportunities to transform the region’s economy.

We are investing record amounts in the UK’s infrastructure, including funding the largest road-building programme since the 1970s.

A full public consultation will be held next year, in which residents and businesses in and around the corridor will have their say on more detailed designs for the route.

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Published 12 September 2018