New government pledge on dual carriageway link from A12 to Stansted
Work to build a new dual carriageway between the A12 and Stansted Airport could start in the next three to four years, a top-level meeting of business leaders and politicians heard this week.
Plans to build a new road from the A12 to Braintree, where it would link into the existing dual carriageway to the airport, have been in the pipeline for many years, is being taken forward by Highways England after the Government announced funding to progress the project earlier this year.
Home Secretary Priti Patel, MP for Witham, who is at the forefront of the campaign for the new road, said: “It is good news that the Government is aware of the importance of dualling the A120 but there is more work to do to ensure a fully-funded scheme can be delivered this decade.
“The overwhelming support for the A120 has helped get the proposals this far and we need to continue to work together and collectively to push the A120 even higher up the Government’s agenda.”
The virtual meeting of MPs, local politicians, business and community representatives heard a preferred route for the dual carriageway could be announced at the end of next year.
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Essex County Council deputy leader Kevin Bentley, who hosted the progress meeting, said: “I am pleased we now have the combined weight of the Department for Transport and Highways England progressing delivery of this much-needed scheme, which I now very much hope will become a reality in the next three or four years.
“The A120 upgrade is vital to solve issues from congestion, delays, poor resilience and safety to poor air quality and noise from lorries in local villages. Plus, the scheme is equally important to bring about business expansion, new jobs and housing.”
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David Burch, Director of Policy at Essex Chambers of Commerce, said the importance of the A120 for businesses could not be understated.
He said: “The road network is good if you are travelling north-south but heading east-west it is dire. We know the hold-ups our members experience and the effect it has, not just in terms of time but also money and business lost. We want to build back after Covid-19 and Brexit and we need to have a modern efficient road network across the county to do that.”