£5 million investment in St Helens’ roads

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Photo courtesy of Michael Gil via Flickr

Photo courtesy of Michael Gil via Flickr

St Helens Council has approved a £5 million investment to maintain roads in the borough, intending to save money in the long term.

The borough’s roads have been badly affected by the severe winter weather in recent years, from extreme flooding to below-zero temperatures, leaving the roads with pot-holes and cracks, at large cost to the council.

St Helens Council has approved an “invest to save” project, which will see it spending £5 million on preventative maintenance work on the borough’s highways. The funding for the project will come from the council’s capital receipts, by selling fixed assets such as land.

The two year investment is expected to provide the council with a saving of up to £2 million and will come from a reduction in repair costs and insurance claims. Without the investment it has been predicted that the roads will deteriorate causing further spending.

Councillor Richard McCauley, cabinet member for Environmental Protection and Safer Communities said: “Based on a preliminary assessment, a capital investment of £5 million over the next two years will ensure our roads and footpaths are at an acceptable standard and will reduce the amount of on-going revenue required for repair.

This positive action by the Council will create a long term saving of £20-million. It is part of an on-going pledge by the Council to deliver improvements for its residents.”

Studies have proven that maintenance that has been planned to prevent further deterioration is around 20 times more effective than unexpected repair work and can extend the life of roads for up to 10 years.

About Emma Kemmery, JMU Journalism