Press release

Major roads investment in the north east and Yorkshire

18 new road schemes worth £2.3 billion for Yorkshire and the north east of England.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government


An ambitious £15 billion plan to triple levels of spending by the end of the decade to increase the capacity and condition of England’s roads, was announced to Parliament today (1 December 2014) by Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin and Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander.

Yorkshire and north east of England will benefit from 18 new schemes worth around £2.3 billion, creating an estimated 1,500 construction jobs.

Patrick McLoughlin said:

Today I am setting out the biggest, boldest and most far-reaching roads programme for decades. It will dramatically improve the network and unlock Britain’s economic potential.

Roads are key to our nation’s prosperity. For too long they have suffered from under-investment.

This government has a long term plan to secure the country’s future and this £15 billion roads programme is demonstration of that. It will directly benefit hardworking families across Yorkshire and the north east.

It represents the biggest investment in roads in a generation and will transform the major corridors of the M1, M62 and A1. The new funding builds on the improvements that began in 2010, including:

  • the A1 upgrade between Leeming and Barton – work is underway to build an all-motorway link from Newcastle and Teesside to the rest of England by 2017
  • 3 stretches of smart motorway (a new system which includes an extra lane to manage the flow of traffic and improve motorway safety) are underway on the M1 and on the M62
  • a second Tyne Tunnel opened in 2011, widening the A19 under the river to 2 lanes in each direction

Spending during the next parliament on the local and national roads network across Yorkshire and the north east will be boosted further by maintenance funding worth £1.6 billion.

Chair of the Cabinet Infrastructure Committee and Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander, said:

World class infrastructure is vital if we are to build a stronger economy, but it matters in other ways too. It invigorates communities and gives people more opportunities to get on in life. This is why I have ensured that this government has prioritised funding roads, and railways, at a high level for future generations.

For decades our roads have suffered from under investment, so I’m particularly delighted to be able to announce this expansive range of new road schemes today. Investment on this scale is only possible because we have taken the difficult decisions needed to control our public finances and stuck to our recovery plan which is now delivering strong growth and record numbers of jobs.

These projects, like the scheme for the M62 extension, will help unleash the economic potential of both the regions they serve and of the overall economy.

Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, said:

I promised when I was in the north east that we would address this area’s economic needs for the future.

Our Long term-economic plan means today we can invest £2.3 billion into the infrastructure in the north east and Yorkshire to improve, repair and expand our roads. This is all about investing in the northern powerhouse we are seeking to build.

Our plans will transform some of the country’s most important strategic routes, and ambitious projects such as the upgrade of the A1, as well as spending on important local infrastructure, will boost productivity and help the local economy of the north east.

For years our roads have been neglected. Now that this government is fixing the economy, we can afford to invest properly in our roads – unlocking jobs and local growth by creating a road network that is fit for the 21st century.

Highlights of today’s announcement are:

  • in addition to the £300 million widening scheme between Coal House and Metro Centre (announced in 2013 and currently being delivered), work will begin to widen the adjacent section to the south between Coal House and the junction with the A194 (M), as well as provision of additional lanes to the north from Scotswood to North Brunton - this will reduce congestion and enable development around Newcastle and Gateshead
  • investing £290 million to upgrade the A1 from Morpeth to Ellingham to create a new expressway-standard road to Ellingham and add further improvements between Ellingham and the Scottish border - this will create 34 miles of continuous ‘expressway’ dual carriage north of Newcastle, better connecting Northumberland into the rest of the country
  • extending smart motorways westwards along the M62, so they cross the Pennines to link Leeds and Manchester - this will be the first major increase in trans-Pennine capacity since 1971, when the M62 first opened to traffic
  • planning will begin to upgrade the last non-motorway section of the A1 in Yorkshire, between Redhouse and Darrington. Once completed, it will reduce congestion and improve safety along this route, as well as creating a new corridor to the north east, reducing congestion on the M1 around Sheffield and Leeds
  • a study into the feasibility of building a trans-Pennine tunnel to address the strategic gap between Sheffield and Manchester, that would transform capacity and reduce congestion while still preserving the tranquillity of the Peak District

Detail of the Yorkshire and the north east road schemes

Yorkshire and the north east road investment infographics and images.

Scheme name Scheme description Announced
A1 Coal House to Metro Centre A1: junction 67 (Coal House) to junction 71 ( Metro Centre): increasing lane capacity from 2 to 3 lanes in each direction within the highway boundary; creating parallel link roads between the Lobley Hill and Gateshead Quay junctions. 2012
A1 Leeming to Barton A1: junction 51 (Leeming) to junction 56 (Barton): upgrading to 3 lane motorway standard completing the remaining non motorway section on the strategic M1/A1(M) route between London and Newcastle 2012
M1 junctions 32 to 35A M1: junction 32 (M18 interchange) to 35a (A616): upgrading to smart motorway including hard shoulder running 2010
M1 junctions 39 to 42 M1: junction 39 (Denby Dale) to junction 42 (M62 interchange): upgrading to smart motorway including hard shoulder running 2010
A19 Coast Road A19: (A1058 junction): upgrading the existing grade separated roundabout to a 3 level interchange to increase capacity and improve safety; together with the A19 Testos, raises the A19 to expressway standard from Yorkshire to north of Newcastle 2013
A19 Testos A19: junction with the A184: a grade separated junction providing free flowing access to the southern side of the Tyne Tunnel; together with the A19 Coast Road scheme this will raise the A19 to expressway standard from Yorkshire to the north of Newcastle 2013
A160/A180 Immingham A160/A180: Port of Immingham: improvements to the junction between the A160 and A180 near Immingham plus a full dual carriageway link from the A180 to the Port of Immingham 2013
A63 Castle Street A63: Castle Street Hull: grade separation of the A1079 Mytongate junction in Hull to reduce congestion and improve safety; improvements to the surrounding roads including new pedestrian and cycle access across the A63 2013
A1 north of Ellingham A1 north of Ellingham: measures to enhance the performance and safety of the A1 north of Ellingham to include: 3 sections of climbing lanes, 5 junctions with improved right turn refuges, and better crossing facilities for pedestrians and cyclists Autumn Statement 2014
A1 Morpeth to Ellingham dualling A1 Morpeth to Ellingham: upgrading to dual carriageway to provide continuous high quality dual carriageway from Newcastle to Alnwick Autumn Statement 2014
A1 Scotswood to North Brunton A1 junction 74 (Scotshead) to junction 79 (North Brunton): narrow lane widening to allow dual 3 lane through the junctions with dual 4 lane between some junctions Autumn Statement 2014
A1 Birtley to Coal House widening A1 junction 65 (Birtley) to junction 67 (Coalhouse): widening to provide dual 3 lanes, alongside the replacement of the Allerdene Bridge Autumn Statement 2014
A19 Down Hill Lane junction improvement A19: junction with the A1290: provision of a replacement junction at Downhill Lane to improve capacity and unlock development near the Nissan Factory, including the proposed International Advanced Manufacturing Park Autumn Statement 2014
A19 Norton to Wynyard A19: Norton to Wynyard: widening the Billingham bypass to dual 3 lanes; replacing the concrete surface with low-noise surfacing Autumn Statement 2014
A1 and A19 technology enhancements A1(M) and A19: new technology bringing both roads to motorway standard; includes detection loops, CCTV cameras and variable message signs to provide better information for drivers and active traffic management across Tyne and Wear Autumn Statement 2014
M1 junction 45 Improvement Improvements to junction 45 to allow increased capacity, and to support the nearby Aire Valley enterprise zone. Autumn Statement 2014
M621 junctions 1 to 7 improvements Junction enhancements and localised widening of sections of the M621 in central Leeds. Autumn Statement 2014
M62/M606 Chain Bar M62: junction 26 (M606 Chain Bar): provision of a slip road to provide a direct link from the M62 westbound to the M606 northbound; reduces congestion from the main part of the existing junction Autumn Statement 2014
M62 junctions 20 to 25 Smart motorways (SMs) across the Pennines, from Rochdale to Brighouse. Links 2 existing SM sections to create a continuous smart route from Leeds to Manchester. Autumn Statement 2014
A628 climbing lanes A628 Woodhead Bridge: provision of 2 eastbound climbing lanes near Woodhead Bridge and Salter's Brook Bridge Autumn Statement 2014
A61 dualling A61: completion of the dualling of the A61 between the A616 roundabout and the M1 junction 36. Autumn Statement 2014
A64 Hopgrove junction Grade separation of the A64 Hopgrove junction, which serves as the eastern approach to York. Autumn Statement 2014
M1/M62 Lofthouse interchange Major enhancement to provide additional capacity at M62/M1 Lofthouse interchange. Autumn Statement 2014
A1 Redhouse to Darrington Upgrade of the A1 in South Yorkshire to raise the last non-motorway section to motorway standard. This creates an alternative strategic route from the Midlands to the north east, bypassing Leeds and Sheffield and improving conditions in these areas. Autumn Statement 2014
M1 junctions 35A to 39 Smart motorways to link the existing SM sections around Sheffield and Leeds, which in turn connects up the trans-Pennine stretches identified in RIS1 and the London to Yorkshire route planned for RIS2 Autumn Statement 2014
A1(M) Doncaster bypass Additional lane of capacity for A1(M) around Doncaster, upgrading the oldest stretch of 2 lane motorway still in service. This will relieve local congestion and provide the capacity needed to make the A1 an alternative (and better) strategic route to the north east Autumn Statement 2014
M62 junctions 25 to 30 Smart motorway to the south of Leeds between Brighouse and Wakefield. Opened to traffic in 2013. 2010 - completed
Northern trans-Pennine study Study of the case for dualling the A69 and/or A66 to create a new strategic link across the Pennines in northern England. Autumn Statement 2014
Trans-Pennine tunnel study Study of the viability of a tunnel under the Pennines to link Manchester and Sheffield. Autumn Statement 2014

Roads media enquiries

Published 1 December 2014