1. ITV Report

Pothole repairs and airport tram link among transport funding announcements

More than 170,000 potholes in the North West will be fixed in 2017/18. Photo: PA

A Metrolink extension to Manchester Airport terminal 2, repairs to more than 170,000 potholes and some of the most dangerous North West roads have been announced as part of a £3 billion government investment in UK transport.

The Department for Transport has also announced improvements to the North West quadrant of the M60, between junctions 8 to 18 - the A6144 to Liverpool and M66 to Accrington.

It will also continue to examine the case for improving connectivity between Manchester and Sheffield.

This is a government that steps up, not back which is why we are investing record amounts into improving our roads across the country. This investment is over and above the £23 billion we are spending to get motorists to their destinations quickly, more easily and safely.

The schemes announced today are focused on relieving congestion and providing important upgrades to ensure our roads are fit for the future - removing the barriers to help make an economy that works for everyone.

– Chis Grayling, Transport Secretary

The government investments and schemes announced today:

  • Further analysis of the case for a tunnel beneath the pennines to assess the full impact of any improvements before a firm and final conclusion can be reached.
  • £1m investment to further the business case for the Warrington Waterfront Western Link - a new link road to the West of Warrington including a potential high level crossing of the Manchester Ship Canal which aims to open up land for housing and development.
  • £2.1m investment to further the business case for the Manchester Metrolink Airport Extension – an extension of Manchester Metrolink to Terminal 2 of Manchester Airport which aims to improve passenger journeys to the soon to be expanded Terminal 2.
  • £2m investment to further the business case for making the remaining single carriageway section of the A500 west of the M6 into a dual carriageway which aims to reduce congestion and provide capacity for future growth.
  • £9m to fix around 170,000 potholes in the North West in 2017/18.
  • £175m to upgrade 12 of the most dangerous local roads in the region with the highest risk of fatal and serious crashes.

The government is providing £925 million which highways authorities will have to bid for in order to upgrade and repair their roads. The DfT says this is on top of the £6 billion councils are receiving up to 2021, an increase on the £4.7 billion spent between 2010 and 2015 and almost double the £3.7 million spent between 2005 and 2010.

A further £70 million from the Pothole Fund will be allocated next year. This will allow highway authorities to start repairs quickly.

The Department for Transport says it will work with councils to improve the 50 roads with the worst safety record, which includes the A588 in Lancashire.