Huge proposed investment in local roads welcomed by Huntingdon MP Jonathan Djanogly
1st December 2014
The A428 has today been announced as part of the Government’s first ever road investment strategy. The A428 constitutes one of the 84 named schemes within the strategy. The assumption is that construction will start within the five year period and that funding will be provided from the £15 billion announced today. Government estimates of the total costs of the scheme are between £250m - £500m. The next step will be to move towards looking at the route and the planning consultation process.
Chairman of the A428/A421 Alliance, Jonathan Djanogly MP, who has been at the forefront of the campaign for an upgrade said:
‘I am delighted that our Government has now recognised the vital need to upgrade the A428. Today's announcement is excellent news for my constituents in Huntingdonshire and for the East of England. These proposals are going to improve security for my constituents and also provide the infrastructure necessary to develop our local and regional businesses and indeed our prosperity moving forwards. This is a fine example of Conservative policies delivering for people in practice.’
‘Over 45 interested parties including local MPs, Councils and Councillors formed an Alliance to lobby the Government on this key infrastructure issue. Across this corridor, a great deal of work has gone into leading a strong campaign for a better A428/A421 and I am pleased to say that today’s announcement is the successful outcome of that sustained effort. Now we need to keep the pressure on for this project to be delivered as soon as possible.’
‘I also welcome the news that the A1 is to be the basis of one of six feasibility studies that have also been announced today. This study will consider options for improvements of the A1 from the M25 through to Peterborough.’
‘Last Friday I met with Alistair Burt, MP for North East Bedfordshire, as well as with representatives of the A1 Safety Group and the SG19 Group to discuss this very issue. In 1994 there were plans to reroute the A1 between Black Cat roundabout and Brampton to the west. This remains a popular option with local residents and I shall be working with them to make sure our local voice is heard in the coming feasibility study and consultation.’
‘Together, an upgraded A14, A428 and A1 will provide the infrastructure necessary for my constituency to move forwards and so I find this to be a very exciting and positive series of announcements.’
Mr Jonathan Djanogly (Huntingdon) (Con): With the A428 now included as a named scheme, together with the A14 proposals and now the A1 feasibility study announcement, this Secretary of State and this Government are showing a profound understanding and commitment to developing the infrastructure needed for my constituency and the whole of the east of England. Will he say a little more about the timing of the feasibility study for the A1?
Mr McLoughlin: I have already spoken to my hon. Friend, who came to see me a few weeks ago, about the Cambridge to Milton Keynes route, which, for him, is a first move in the right direction. He is absolutely right about what we have to do in the longer term on a road investment strategy. We have done it for the railways and we should be very pleased that we are going to do it for roads in future. These schemes do not happen overnight—they take planning. It is right that we try to take local communities along with us wherever we can and gather support for sensible proposals, so that we are not rushing forward and turning the tap on and off, but ensuring that people can see that this forms part of an overall strategy.