Transport Secretary Chris Grayling says a vital £500,000 maintenance project in Cumbria will provide a boost to drivers using the A66.
Highways England has begun a nine-week scheme to replace an expansion joint on a bridge over the River Marron at Bridgefoot, along the A66 between Cockermouth and Workington.
The maintenance work will ensure the upkeep of the vital east-west road for drivers and forms part of the Government’s commitment to continually improve the country’s road networks.
Mr Grayling said the work in Cumbria will enable the A66 to remain a key artery for business and tourism well into the future.
He said: “This important maintenance work means the A66 remains a viable and integral piece of the transport network in the North West and can help the economy of the region continue to grow.
“I am pleased to see the work underway and I’m sure Highways England will keep disruption to traffic to a minimum as the project progresses. This Government is committed to investing record amounts to improve our roads across the country to get motorists to their destinations safely and quickly.
“We want our roads fit for the future – removing the barriers to help make an economy that works for everyone.”
Cockermouth South Councillor Alan Kennon said local people living and working in the area would accept some disruption caused by diversions during the work in return for the long-term benefits.
He said: “The A66 is vital to this part of Cumbria and without its upkeep, business would suffer dramatically. No-one wants the disruption but I am sure people in Copeland and Workington will accept this work needs to happen to provide a boost for this area in the longer term.
“I am delighted the Conservative Government is providing the funding for projects such as this as the importance of the upkeep of A66 for commerce and tourism cannot be understated.”