Upgrade works to cut motorway congestion

YORKSHIRE’S motorways are to undergo a programme of major improvement works to increase their capacity, the Government has confirmed.

Work will start on upgrades to the M62 in West Yorkshire later this year to reduce congestion and improve safety and journey times, following an announcement of a schedule of nationwide improvements by Roads Minister Mike Penning.

He said the series of works across the country – including the M1 near Sheffield and near Wakefield – would also help regenerate the economy.

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All the works involve bringing the hard shoulder into use and managing traffic flow during peak periods. In all, 14 major road schemes have been timetabled.

The first phase involves the M62 between junction 25, Huddersfield and Brighouse, and junction 30 at Rothwell, work due to be carried out between October and December this year. The second phase includes the M1 between junction 32 and 35A around Sheffield, work beginning in 2012-13.

The M1 at Wakefield, between junction 39 and 42, will undergo improvement works as part of the third phase which will begin in either 2013-14 or 2014-15.

Mr Penning said: “For every pound invested on these schemes on average we will get back £7 of benefits to the economy with some delivering even higher returns. Transport provides the crucial links that allow people and businesses to prosper and we will continue to invest in schemes that reduce congestion and support economic growth.”

A further 18 schemes are currently on the drawing board, subject to future Government spending reviews.