Highways England launched by government

Highways England launched by government

Organisation that will take control of England’s major roads reveals five-year business plan

The government has launched Highways England, the organisation that will take control of England's motorways and A roads from April next year.

The government-owned company will replace the existing Highways Agency.

Highways England has also today published a five year business plan for 2015-2020.

The plan includes commitments to planning roadworks to reduce further works over the next five years, clear up incidents more quickly, increase access to local routes for cyclists and pedestrians, improve the environment for those who live by roads and make £1.2bn of efficiencies through better planning.

The plan also contains specific commitments, including:

  • Building 400 miles of extra capacity by creating a spine of 'smart' motorways that relieve congestion and reduce delays without the need for widening
  • A safety programme that builds towards "the vision of no-one harmed on the strategic road network"
  • The introduction of a new standard for A roads known as 'expressways' with modernised junctions, refuge areas and advanced technology to keep traffic moving
  • Substantial resurfacing of the network and reducing noise at 1,150 locations
  • Producing a National Cycling Strategy by the end of 2015
  • Reducing the impact of incidents by clearing 85% of motorway incidents within one hour by working closely with the emergency services and partners
  • Creating a new company with the right capabilities and effective working with suppliers

The plan will be followed by a detailed delivery plan, due for publication before Highways England starts operating in April 2015, which sets out how the strategic business plan will be delivered.

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