Northern road and rail improvements to create thousands of jobs

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road and rail improvement

The latest figures from the Department for Transport’s analysis of future spending has shown that there will be greater investment into road and rail upgrades in the north compared to London and in the south

The report states that between 2018 and 2021, the government will be investing £831 per head on road and rail upgrades in the north-east, north-west and Yorkshire and the Humber.

This is an increase of more than £30 more per head than London and the south at £799.

The figures follow Aviation Minister Baroness Sugg’s visit to Liverpool Airport ahead of attending the Northern Transport Summit in Manchester today (25th June).

At the summit, she will reveal that the expansion of Heathrow could lead to thousands of new jobs as businesses benefit from the UK’s improved connections.

Aviation Minister Baroness Sugg said:

“We are investing more than £13 billion to improve connections across the north between 2015 and 2020, getting people to their work, family and friends, quicker and easier than before.

“This investment demonstrates the government’s commitment to the Northern Powerhouse, which will help unlock economic growth and much-needed housing across the region.

“And a new Heathrow runway will bring further benefits to the north, better connecting the region’s airports with the UK’s hub airport and opening up new trade opportunities which could deliver a further boost to the northern economy.”

The government has confirmed that it is prepared to intervene to reserve slots at Heathrow for flights to airports in nations and regions around the UK if plans go ahead.

More than £1 billion will improve the north’s rail network through the Northern and TransPennine Express franchises.

The move will allow for 40,000 more passengers to travel on over 2,000 more services a week, with all trains replaced or refurbished by 2020.

A further £3 million government investment will improve connectivity between Manchester, Leeds and York on the Transpennine rail route.

A greater emphasis will be paid to smart ticketing which will reduce the stress of buying  tickets at a station.

In addition, as part of the government’s commitment to Northern Powerhouse Rail (NPR), Transport for the North has been given £60 million to develop proposals for the scheme, alongside investing £300 million to ensure HS2 can accommodate future NPR services.

Improvements to roads have seen the last stretch of motorway-standard between Newcastle and London via the A1(M) and M1 officially opened, which has provided quicker connections from the north-east while creating new opportunities for businesses.

The final section of the M62 upgrade between Leeds and Manchester is expected to start construction in 2019/20.

Over the next three years, Highways England will start constructing a further 22 projects in the north including three upgrades on the M6 near Manchester, the A585 Windy Harbour to Skippool, dualling the A1 between Morpeth and Ellingham and improving junctions on the M621.

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