New funding has been awarded to six local authorities across the Midlands to help them develop business cases to support improvements to local roads.
Each council will receive up to £50,000 from regional transport body Midlands Connect to work on key schemes in their own areas, potentially paving the way to seeking Government support for these improvements if viable options can be found.
Midlands Connect said these six schemes had been assessed for their feasibility, deliverability and ability to ease congestion.
The six projects are:
– Coventry ring road junctions nine to five, Coventry City Council
– A17 Corridor in Heckington, Lincolnshire County Council
– A511 between A50 and county boundary east of Burton and A5121 between A38 junctions at Branston and Claymills, Staffordshire County Council
– A461 between Castlegate Island (Dudley) and Navigation Roundabout (Great Bridge), Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council
– A461 between Dudley, Brierley Hill and Stourbridge, Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council
– Strategic study of Leicestershire’s major road network, Leicestershire County Council
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Each of the improvements is linked to wider regional objectives including securing economic renewal, boosting productivity and supporting new housing developments as well as encouraging active travel such as walking and cycling.
They will also provide better links to motorways and major trunk roads if they are handed the green light.
The ‘major road network’ forms a middle tier of the country’s busiest and most economically important local authority A roads.
Alongside the funding, Midlands Connect will now work with the six local councils to offer guidance in building their cases to the Government.
This is the first of three planned rounds of support for councils to promote local schemes which comes from Midlands Connect’s ‘MRN preparation fund’.
Major road network and strategic roads manager Swati Mittal said: “We are delighted to support these critical schemes throughout the region, using our expertise to allow local authorities to make the case to the Government for funding.
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“Midlands Connect explores, develops and recommends transport projects which will provide the biggest possible economic, environmental and social benefits for the Midlands.
“These projects will deliver economic uplift, jobs and development opportunities throughout the region.
“We will also be examining how these schemes can contribute to decarbonisation, the take up of public transport and active travel.
“It’s essential that all road investments have these objectives at their heart.”