Highways England has unveiled the details of plans for £27.4bn investment in the strategic road network across the country. The investment plans include taking forward flagship projects to connect key parts of the country, including the Lower Thames Crossing, a new road and tunnel under the Thames between Essex and Kent, adding capacity and speeding up journeys between the Channel ports and the rest of the country, and improving the major A303 direct route between the South East and South West including the tunnel near the Stonehenge World Heritage Site.
In a boost to the nation’s recovery, Highways England said its plans would help support 64,000 construction industry jobs.
Highways England Chief Executive Jim O’Sullivan said:
Our network is a vital part of everyone’s life. It has served the country well during the pandemic, keeping supermarket shelves stocked and enabling key workers to get where they need to be.
Over the next five years we will increase capacity where it is most needed and continue to upgrade more of the network which has suffered from decades of under-investment.
We now have a strong track record of delivering new schemes and operating the network for the benefit of our customers and the communities we serve. The plan we’re launching today will protect and create jobs to aid the nation’s recovery, and make journeys faster and more reliable for freight and road users.
The plans set out how Highways England will deliver the Government’s second Road Investment Strategy announced at the Budget in March.