Roads: 30 bypass projects will get go-ahead

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The Independent Online

Roads are to receive around £54bn of public money together with £5bn from private sources. The choice of specific schemes will depend on local studies and decisions taken by councils.

Roads are to receive around £54bn of public money together with £5bn from private sources. The choice of specific schemes will depend on local studies and decisions taken by councils.

The investment is expected to deliver all 40 schemes in the Highways Agency's targeted programme of improvements.

Around 30 bypasses will be built for trunk roads and widening projects will improve 5 per cent of the national strategic road network covering around 360 miles. Eighty major schemes to tackle bottlenecks on roads other than trunk roads will go ahead and £130m a year will go on smaller-scale targeted improvements, including £90m to relieve congestion and "safety hot spots".

Computerised systems to manage the network will be widely introduced in an attempt to reduce delays and improve reliability. New incident-warning systems to prevent multiple collisions together with safety improvements at accident black spots are also planned.

Quieter surfaces will be installed on more than 60 per cent of the roads network including all concrete stretches to end the blight of constant noise for people living nearby. Reductions in traffic noise for three million people living within 600m of trunk roads are also promised.

The strategy aims to reduce congestion on inter-urban trunk roads to 5 per cent below current levels. In addition, roads will be maintained to a higher standard so there should be fewer contraflows.

There will also be measures to provide motorists with better information to help them plan their journeys.

A target has been set to reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured on trunk roads by 33 per cent over the next 10 years.

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