Docks motorway link in £15bn roads upgrade

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Aerial view of Liverpool container docks. Pic © Airviews

Aerial view of Liverpool container docks. Pic © Airviews

Liverpool’s container docks are set to get a new motorway link as part of the government’s £15 billion ‘road revolution’.

Roads in the North West are set for a £800m improvement in what the government is calling “the biggest investment in roads in a generation”.

Part of the money will be used to upgrade the A5036 Princess Way, through Seaforth and Litherland, which links Liverpool’s commercial docks to motorway connections.

The plans are part of Chancellor George Osborne’s Autumn Statement, which will be announced in full on Wednesday.

Other improvements in the Merseyside area will include a new junction off the M56 which will serve Runcorn and provide a link to the new Mersey Gateway Bridge.

The M53 in Wirral is also set to be upgraded to a ‘smart motorway’ which will help to manage congestion in Birkenhead and support new housing and office space at the Wirral Waters development.

Councillor Richard Kemp, Liberal Democrat leader in Liverpool, told JMU Journalism: “I am delighted that despite the difficult financial circumstances the Government is in it still has managed to find £800m to spend on the road system of the Liverpool City Region.

“This news, together with the new Mersey Gateway Bridge at Runcorn and the improvements of the West Coast main railway line, means that our city region can create new industries and expand existing industries.

“This counters the oft repeated claims that the government only looks to London and the South East. Nick Clegg is a Sheffield MP and has visited Liverpool many times and I know he is committed to helping us recover our trading pre-eminence.”

The ambitious plan will see the North West of England benefit from nine new schemes and will create an estimated 600 construction jobs in the area.

Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said: “Today I am setting out the biggest, boldest and most far-reaching roads programme for decades. It will dramatically improve the network and unlock Britain’s economic potential.

“This government has a long-term plan to secure the country’s future and this £15 billion roads programme is demonstration of that. It will directly benefit hardworking families across the north west.”

The plan was initially announced in 2013 and will involve 100 road improvement schemes and add 1,300 new miles of extra lanes to motorways and A roads around the country.

About Amy Nicholson, JMU Journalism