Transport Minister Stephen Hammond will be meeting with me to discuss moving forward plans to improve the congestion and accident blighted A14.
Cambridgeshire County Council has led a campaign with local councils and most local MPs to improve the vital transport artery and has been working closely with the Department for Transport.
Improving the A14 is vital if we are to grow the local economy and create more jobs. Regular congestion on the A14 acts as a barrier to improving the local and UK economy and costs businesses millions of pounds. It has been the scene of hundreds of accidents and its improvement is vital in improving safety as well as managing the growth in housing in Cambridgeshire.
The Government announced last July that a major improvement to the A14 would go ahead. The Council worked closely with the Department for Transport leading up to this announcement and has continued to do so since to ensure the developing scheme meets local needs.
The Council is also holding a high level A14 summit on February 7, with local authorities and LEPs affected by the A14, to explore options for an innovative A14 consortium to help deliver enhancements to a road which is critical for the national, regional and local economy.
The Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Transport has been invited by me to Cambridgeshire to discuss the plans for the much needed A14 improvements and how the timetable for delivery can be speeded up.
I am very pleased that the Minister has accepted my invitation to talk personally about speeding up the delivery of these vital improvements. It is a sign of the importance the Government have put on this project and how much they have been listening to our arguments.
Cambridgeshire is recognised by Government as a key driver of the UK economy and the A14 currently acts as a barrier to future prosperity and business growth. This scheme is vital to managing the growth in homes that Cambridgeshire has but more importantly not improving this road comes with a human cost, in terms of tragic accidents. That is why I am delighted we have been working with the Government to get this scheme on the table but also why it is so vital that this scheme is built sooner rather than later.
Our businesses, communities and economy can’t wait but importantly neither can reducing the terrible accident toll. I look forward to a very productive talk with the Minister.”
The meeting will take place at Shire Hall, Cambridge on Thursday, 24 January and will involve members of the Council’s Cabinet and transport officers.