Construction has begun on £1.5Bn A14 scheme, with support received across Cambridgeshire.
Cambridgeshire have welcomed the news that construction is underway on one of Britain’s biggest road upgrades.
The announcement was made as Transport Secretary Chris Grayling visited the major improvement scheme, on the A14 in Cambridgeshire to formally mark the beginning of construction.
The A14 Cambridge to Huntingdon improvement scheme will be delivered on behalf of the Highways England by the A14 Integrated Delivery Team. The joint venture of four UK contractors and two design consultants include Balfour Beatty, Carillion, Costain and Skanska and for design, Atkins and CH2M.
The £1.5bn project will upgrade 21 miles of the A14 to three lanes in each direction adding additional capacity, boosting the local and national economy and cutting up to 20 minutes off journeys.
The project will include a major new bypass for Huntingdon, widening the A1 between Brampton and Alconbury, widening the existing A14 between Swavesey and Milton and improving the junctions at Bar Hill, Swavesey, Girton, Histon and Milton.
Jim O’Sullivan, Highways England Chief Executive, said: “The A14 is one of the most important east to west road links in the country, connecting businesses, communities and families. These vital improvements have been highly anticipated, and it is great to be able to start main construction today.
“We have worked very hard to get the project to this stage and I would like to thank all our local partners who have supported us and worked with us to get this far.
“I want the A14 to redefine what a road scheme can achieve and, in addition to a significantly upgraded road, I am determined that our work here will leave behind a positive legacy for people living along the A14 – providing better, safer journeys, setting hundreds of young people off on fulfilling careers in construction, and boosting the capacity of the whole country to deliver world leading infrastructure improvements.”
The project was given the go-ahead in May 2016, and preliminary work has taken place including preparing for the construction of compounds as well as ecological, archaeological and ground investigations.
Last month, a new Highway Academy run by the West Anglia Training Association opened, which will train apprentices who will go on to work on the project. A community fund set up by the project team has already agreed funding in principle for four local community projects, with several funding rounds left to run.