Yesterday, I presented a paper to our Local Enterprise Partnership on funding for the A14.
Government expects the A14 to be funded in three ways. The largest chunk of money will still come from the government, a significant amount from a road toll and a much smaller amount from local contributions.
The theory is that a local economic advantage is created by the upgrade and some of that should be used to help pay for it. The economic advantage is a reality.
Without the A14 upgrade the 10,000 new houses planned for our new town of Northstowe can’t go ahead, Waterbeach will never be developed and the enterprise zone at Alconbury is put at risk. On top of that businesses are being harmed and people killed and injured.
Our enterprise zone provides a potential revenue of around £180m over 25 years and the paper suggested that £50m of that should be pledged to the upgrade. Given the LEP exists to stimulate enterprise and just about everyone points to the A14 as the biggest barrier to economic development, it seems a good match.
I was pleased that the LEP board supported the paper.