Roads minister 'hopeful' for dual carriageway upgrade to congested stretch of A64

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The roads minister has said he is “pushing for” upgrades to convert a section of the A64 into dual carriageway.

National Highways has proposed dualling a six-mile stretch of the A64 between the Hopgrove roundabout and Barton-le-Willows – where it would meet an existing section of dual carriageway near the Jinnah restaurant – and upgrade the junction to reduce congestion.

More than two years ago, the Government announced a £300m upgrade of the A64 between Scarborough and York would be among schemes to be considered for funding after 2025.

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However, Richard Holden MP, the roads and local transport minister, has now said he is “really hopeful,” but could not guarantee that the project will go ahead.

Hundreds of millions has been committed for an A64 upgrade, but it is not certain if it will go ahead.Hundreds of millions has been committed for an A64 upgrade, but it is not certain if it will go ahead.
Hundreds of millions has been committed for an A64 upgrade, but it is not certain if it will go ahead.

Whether funding is available for the major road project will not be clear until chancellor Jeremy Hunt’s Spring Budget on March 15.

Mr Holden told the BBC: “It’s one of the big roads that’s been mentioned for such a long time.

“I’m really hopeful. I’m pushing for it.”

Businesses, councillors and MPs have been campaigning to dual the A64 for decades, which they say would bring huge economic benefits, reduce congestion and improve safety.

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The roads minister has said he "pushing for" work to upgrade the A64 with a dual carriageway.The roads minister has said he "pushing for" work to upgrade the A64 with a dual carriageway.
The roads minister has said he "pushing for" work to upgrade the A64 with a dual carriageway.

National Highways held an extensive public consultation between July and September 2022, which had more than 1,100 responses.

A report following the consultation found five per cent of respondents said the upgrades should be extended beyond Barton-le-Willows and as far as Malton or all the way to Scarborough.

One respondent told the consultation: “We joke that we are 42 miles from England in Scarborough. No matter what time you drive it’s insanely busy and stationary traffic is a common site on the A64.”

“The whole A64 from York to Scarborough needs dualling. The journey time, queues and congestion is depressing and unacceptable,” another added.

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John Killeen, National Highways’ Project Manager, said: “We’re working hard to ensure we can design and deliver a scheme that benefits road users and the wider community.

“We’ve used the information gathered through the consultation to feed into the preliminary design of the project.

“There is also a considerable amount of environmental, planning and traffic work for us to consider before concluding which option to take forward.”