Cheshire set for major £69m roads upgrade centred on A500 scheme
Drivers in Cheshire are a step closer to benefiting from quicker and safer commutes, after the Government today (July 23) gave the green light to plans to upgrade the A500 – one of the area’s busiest roads.
More than £53m has been made available for the £68.7m project, which will see a 2.1-mile section of the A500 between the Meremoor Moss roundabout and M6 junction near Crewe transformed into a dual carriageway.
The upgrade will improve journey times, slashing congestion for commuters, while providing a much-needed boost to the local economy and businesses, improving road connections between Stoke-on-Trent, Nantwich and Crewe, and helping improve the flow of goods and services between the towns.
Once built, the scheme will also help mitigate the additional traffic generated by the HS2 Crewe Hub station.
During construction of the vital rail hub, the newly-upgraded A500 will provide a key route for related construction traffic.
Roads Minister Baroness Vere said: “This multimillion-pound upgrade will not only save people time on their daily commute, but will also provide better connections for local business, and unlock opportunities for more homes to be built – providing a boost to the whole economy.”
Cheshire East Council deputy leader and cabinet member for strategic transport, Cllr Craig Browne, said: “This is great news, not only for Crewe but also for the wider sub region.
“Dualling this section of the A500 will reduce congestion, increase network resilience and improve safety.
“But, equally importantly, it will facilitate the development of key strategic sites in our Local Plan and secure future economic growth in and around Crewe, particularly from the construction and operation of HS2 and a Crewe HS2 hub station.”
He added: “The A500 is a key piece of infrastructure that links Crewe and surrounding areas to the M6 and across the important A50/A500 corridor and was a key component of plans to boost strategic connectivity for key businesses in the region.”
The multimillion-pound scheme will pave the way for additional housing in the region – including 650 new homes set to be built as part of the South Cheshire Growth Village.
Cheshire East Council will now seek the necessary legal permissions and procure a contractor before submitting a final business case to the Department. If approved, construction could start in early 2022.
Today’s commitment from Government follows other major road schemes in the North West which have recently been given the tick of approval, including the Poynton Relief Road and Preston Western Distributor.
Today, the Government also announced a new Northern Transport Acceleration Council and a multimillion-pound rail package – including £589m to begin upgrade works on the Transpennine railway line.
These significant investments will help to level up opportunities and infrastructure across the North.