[C]umbria county councillors have agreed to inject £60,000 to fund a report looking at the potential of a Whitehaven relief road. This report will sit alongside further work to consider improvements to other parts of the A595, the A590 and A66.
In regard to the relief road proposal the report will consider issues like traffic flow and value for money to assess the feasibility of delivering the new road. It is expected that the study will take 6 months to complete and will be carried out by consultants on the council’s behalf.
The study work will be submitted to Highways England and Transport for the North to inform Transport for the North’s (TfNs) developing Strategic Transport Plan for the North of England as well as the Highways England Road Investment Strategy, through which their spending priorities for 2020-2025 will be established.
The study is a joint piece of work with Highways England and Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership.
Cllr Keith Little, Cabinet Member for Highways, said: “For anyone that lives in or travels through west Cumbria they’ll understand why we want to make the case for a Whitehaven relief road, the limitations of the road and the significant traffic volumes cause real issues for people trying to travel in the county.
“The reality though is that this would be a major undertaking and the funding would have to come from national government. That’s why this study is important – it will provide the solid evidence we need to present a convincing case for support.
“I’m sure Cumbrians would join me in urging government to consider this carefully and recognise the economic, social and environmental benefits a relief road would bring.”