Third in a series of short articles looking at what effect the Government’s Comprehensive Spending Review may have on transport in Greater Manchester
Is this a first for Manchester Transport and its predecessor blogs? A whole article about roads? Perhaps – certainly the first since the heady days of the congestion charge debate! Yet our beloved omnibuses would not be able to operate if it weren’t for the highway network, and are certainly affected when there’s too much traffic. So we turn our attention to the Department for Transport’s announcement on road schemes and the projects announced to be going ahead in and around Greater Manchester:
- M60 Junctions 8 to 12 – dynamic hard shoulder running on the 3.9-mile stretch of the M60 Manchester orbital motorway between Carrington Spur and M62.
- M60 Junctions 12 to 15 – additional lane to the 3 mile stretch of anti-clockwise carriageway of the M60 Manchester orbital motorway from M61 to M62.
- M62 Junctions 18 to 20 – dynamic hard shoulder running on the 5-mile stretch of the M62 between A627(M) and M66.
- A556 Knutsford to Bowdon – upgrade of a 4-mile link between the M6 at Knutsford and the M56 at Bowdon from 4 lane single carriageway to dual carriageway standard.
As a regular visitor to the West Midlands, having seen the scheme in operation on the M42, I’ve no major worries over the prospect of vehicles running in the hard shoulder at busy times despite what others may think. One interesting note is that fresh from opening the new Alderley Edge bypass* which passes through his constituency, local MP for Tatton benefits from another road scheme in the form of the A556 upgrade. His name? One George Gideon Oliver Osborne.
* As a Burnage resident, I hope this doesn’t encourage more people to drive into the city centre via Kingsway.
As the Manchester Evening News points out, several road schemes are put on ice by way of there being no additional funds other than for the schemes announced: these include the Mottram-Tintwhistle bypass, the Manchester Airport Eastern Link Road/Hazel Grove and Poynton bypass and the Wigan inner relief road.
[Image credit: "M60" by Jim Grady on Flickr]