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News from the UK Civils Industry 5th June 2019

Posted by: Melonie Debenham
05/06/2019
Industry News

Consultation on £27 million infrastructure scheme launched

A consultation on a £27.1m programme of highway infrastructure improvements will be launched next week.

The project will support the regeneration of the Perry Barr area of Birmingham ahead of the Commonwealth Games in 2022 and includes the removal of the A34 flyover, the retention of the A34 underpass and the replacement of the A34/A4040 roundabout with a four-arm signal junction. There will also be new cycling routes, improved footpaths, removal of subways and landscape improvements.

The scheme will now go out to consultation from 3rd June to 19th July, when people are invited to have their say on the proposed new road layout and other measures.

Cllr Waseem Zaffar, cabinet member for transport and environment, said: “With 5,000 new homes set to be built over the coming years, we need futureproof transport infrastructure to meet the demands of an increased population, with an emphasis on moving people rather than vehicles, reducing congestion which in turn will lead to cleaner air. As well as removing the flyover, this scheme will also deliver improvements for cyclists and pedestrians and will also be complemented by a package of related public transport improvements, such as enhancements to bus and rail provision, opening up the heart of Perry Barr and creating a cleaner, more sustainable environment for all.

“These changes, which were agreed by Cabinet recently, are based on detailed research and modelling and will leave Perry Barr with a better transport network for the years ahead, making the area a place where people will want to visit, shop, work or live. I fully understand the concerns that have been raised locally but the A34 flyover needs to be removed for the maximum benefit to be achieved through the area’s regeneration.

“This is why we are now consulting on this project, so that we can hear people’s views on how this proposed new road layout will affect them, ensuring that we are then able to progress the best possible scheme for the area. I would urge as many people as possible to get in touch and let us know what they think of our plans.” Full story.

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Aviation strategy integral for North

The UK government must establish northern airports as the ‘beating heart’ of the Northern economy, industry leaders have said. 

They said that direct access to the world’s most important economies is critical to the creation of internationally-significant centres of excellence in fields like infrastructure, advanced manufacturing, technology, energy and life sciences in the North.

Ahead of the close of the consultation on the government’s aviation strategy green paper, an event takes place at Manchester Airport’s new pier, which opened on the 1 April 2019 and is the first phase of its wider £1 billion investment to be delivered. The project will transform the airport for the future. This includes by growing Terminal 2 by more than 150 per cent to become the airport’s primary terminal, helping unlock the potential of Manchester’s existing two runways.

This spare runway capacity, coupled with this investment, demonstrate that Manchester Airport, along with other gateways in the north, have the capability to play a leading role in rebalancing the economy and taking pressure away from London and the South East, in the short, medium and long term, leaders have said.

Lord Jim O’Neill, Vice-Chair of the Northern Powerhouse Partnership, said: “Access to the world’s most important markets is key to the north realising its true potential. We are seeing significant private-sector investment in airports, demonstrated nowhere better than here at Manchester Airport. That ambition should be matched by government support for maximising the potential of Northern airports through the Aviation Strategy process.

“We need major investment that will allow the North’s economic corridors to be better connected, attracting investment, and creating jobs.”

Cllr Susan Hinchcliffe, Chair of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority and Leader, Bradford Council, said: “Linking up the North’s airports, together with our rail and road connectivity, is the missing piece of the Northern Powerhouse jigsaw. That is why Lord O’Neill and fellow parliamentarians wrote to the Chancellor last week, seeking meaningful commitment to Northern Powerhouse Rail with a city centre station in Bradford to link to Manchester Airport, Hull and Sheffield as part of the £120 billion package of infrastructure investments in strategic and local transport schemes.” Full story.

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