A government road initiative aiming to unlock growth and help the economy while making journeys more reliable for drivers started building in earnest today in the East of England.
A5-M1 Link Road Dunstable Northern Bypass investment of £162.1 million will increase east-west connectivity between the A5 and M1 with this £162.1 million investment. A new 2.8 mile two-lane dual highway and three new connections will be created — improving commutes for long distance traffic now transiting through Dunstable.
This traffic will be able to use the A5-M1 connection road as an alternative route to driving through the town.
Once completed in spring 2017, this Highways Agency project will also ease congestion and improve safety on the A5.
In this and the next parliament, the government will invest £24 billion in long-term economic projects, including the A5-M1 Link.
Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin, said: “Infrastructure is a critical part of our long term economic plan to secure a better future for the people of Bedfordshire. The A5-M1 Link road is a terrific example of how we’re implementing projects that will stimulate growth across the country.
“Businesses and motorists will benefit from our investment and the extra capacity it brings.”
It is anticipated that the Highways Agency would construct a new dual carriageway north of Dunstable, linking the A5 (at Thorn Turn, just north of its current junction with the A505) with the M1 at a brand-new junction 11A. (to the south of the existing Toddington Services).
A roundabout with the A5 will be built at the western end of the link road, as will a second one at the A5120 Bedford Road intersection, as well as a new interchange with the M1 dubbed junction 11A at the link road’s eastern end.
The proposal also includes an over bridge on Sundon Road, B579 Luton Road and the construction of four bridges running across the A5-M1 Link.
According to Highways Agency senior project manager Paul Unwin, the A5-M1 Link aims to improve accessibility between north-south strategic routes, reduce traffic on the A5, and provide relief to the residents of Houghton Regis while increasing the predictability of travel times for long-distance traffic. “.
“We have worked hard with our contractor and others affected by the work to prepare the programme carefully to reduce interruption.
“Some of the groundwork for the major structure has already been done. Phase one will see the new B579 Luton Road east and west built along with temporary links and the Sundon Road bridge.
The Central Bedfordshire Council has put in £5 million, and a developer has pledged a further £45 million.
Marcel Coiffait, director of community services, Central Bedfordshire Council, said: “Central Bedfordshire Council contributed towards the cost of the A5-M1 Link, recognising its importance as part of a national route.
“This new link road and our projected connecting Woodside Link are wonderful news for Central Bedfordshire. New housing and business developments, inbound investment, job creation, and reduced traffic in town centres are all expected as a result of these plans.