Cheshire East secures £7.5m for road improvements

David McCourt

Cheshire East Council has won £7.5m of Highways Agency funding to relieve traffic congestion around junction 16 of the M6 near Crewe.

The work will involve widening all approaches to junction 16 and installing additional traffic signals on the M6 northbound slip road and A500 approaches.

The Highways Agency has indicated this will reduce queuing and delays on approaches to junction 16.

The scheme is one of 58 nationwide the Highways Agency will deliver as part of its strategic pinch point programme. It aims to help boost the economy, reduce congestion and improve safety.

Cheshire East also successfully bid for £2.7m of local pinch point funding two weeks ago, which will go towards the Basford West spine road linking the A500 at Shavington with Gresty Road in Crewe.

Cllr Michael Jones, Cheshire East Council leader and chairman of the Local Transport Board, said: "This is more great news for the area and is down to the hard work and lobbying this council and the LTB does on behalf of the people.

"One of our key aim is for Cheshire East to have a strong and resilient economy and improving the roads in and around the borough ensures that we will gain an even greater reputation as an excellent place to do business.

"This will also further our plan to make Crewe an economic powerhouse by 2030 and complements the All Change for Crewe programme."

The scheme will also improve access to planned employment and other development sites in Crewe and Stoke-on-Trent.

The council say the improvements have the potential to support the delivery of around 5,800 jobs by 2020.

The work is due to start in 2014 and be completed by the end of that year.

Cheshire East is also waiting to hear whether it has been successful in applying for a further £2.8m of local pinch point funding for a 600 metre-long widening of the A500 on the approach to the M6 at junction 16.

The Highways Agency's 58 schemes, representing an investment of £98m nationally, aim to remove bottlenecks and keep traffic moving on England's motorways and major A roads. They are due be delivered by March 2015 and will bring an estimated £1.4 bn of economic benefit.

The Cheshire and Warrington Local Transport Board is linked with the Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership, and officially launches in May.

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