National Highways to start public consultation on A66

National Highways has started public consultation on its A66 transformation plans, set to be the biggest investment in the north’s road network for a generation.

Baroness Vere, Minister for Roads, Buses and Places, is to launch the National Highways consultation on the proposal to improve the A66 between the M6 at Penrith and A1 at Scotch Corner by dualling the remaining sections of the route and improving a number of key junctions.

The planned upgrade would shape the future of a critical link in the nation’s road infrastructure and redefine local connectivity, said the consultation.

National Highways chief executive Nick Harris said: “We look forward to hearing people’s thoughts on our vision to bring far-reaching benefits to those who use and live near the route. By creating better links we can unlock access to tourism, jobs, essential services and new opportunities.”

Roads Minister Baroness Vere said: “Upgrading the A66 is a project at the heart of our plans to build back better and level up the North by improving infrastructure and boosting connections across the region.

“Whether you’re commuting, visiting the area on holiday, or transporting freight, this upgrade will bring huge benefits to the area by cutting congestion and speeding up journey times. This consultation is a great opportunity for people and businesses to help shape the future of this project so it works for everyone.”

The statutory consultation period has been extended from four weeks to six to give people every opportunity to express their views.

Peter Molyneux, Major Roads Director at Transport for the North, said: “The A66 Trans-Pennine route is an incredibly important east-west route for the northern part of our region and a crucial part of building a New North, yet too often those using it face delays and congestion.

“Once finished, the full dualling of the A66 will have significant benefits for its many thousands of users. We’re pleased to see this project progressing at pace, and continue to work with National Highways and our local Members and partners to help ensure our region benefits from reliable roads as part of a sustainable, multimodal transport network.”

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