A four-year package to improve the drainage systems on the Hertfordshire road network comes into effect this year with the highways teams at Hertfordshire County Council making use of additional drainage funding of £16million.
Climate change has caused different rainfall patterns in the last few years, which means the drainage provision on the council’s roads does not always cope with the amount of rain falling. It is also not only rain falling directly on to the roads that can lead to a flooding problem but water ‘run-off’ from private land too, said the council.
A £10 million capital investment was announced during the budget-setting process earlier this year and will be used alongside £6million of revenue funding which has been allocated to Highways drainage. The funding will be used to maintain and improve the existing drainage systems and replace some of the damaged infrastructure to better deal with the changing rainfall patterns, and the impact they have on the highways network.
A report on the proposed approach to drainage work, which was presented at a meeting of the County Council’s Highways and Transport Cabinet Panel this week, states that work will mainly be about investigation and preparation in 2021/22, with some small-scale works likely to take place later this summer, and provides an outline of the actions that the highways service will take to invest in drainage up until 2025.
Phil Bibby, the County Council’s Executive Member for Highways and Transport, said: “Our Highways teams do a fantastic job, covering the 3,000 miles of roads in the county, and I am delighted that this level of additional funding will be focused on drainage as the impending work will be absolutely critical in making sure that we have effective road drainage systems that help us to deal with the consequences of climate change, and it clearly illustrates our commitment to making a difference.
“Sustainability is at the heart of everything we do as a County Council, and we are committed to reducing our environmental impact wherever possible and creating a cleaner, greener and more sustainable Hertfordshire. This funding, which will help to ease the problems of flooding on our road network, is another example of our commitment to that pledge.”