Start in sight for £212m A5-M1 link road

Grant Prior 11 years ago
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Construction of the A5-M1 link road in Bedfordshire could be brought forward to start in 2014 as an acceleration in the public enquiry process was confirmed yesterday.

Roads Minister Mike Penning said the delayed inquiry would now be re-started next year.

The news is a major boost to the £212m scheme which has already secured £50m in private sector investment for a new 2.9 mile dual carriageway running east from the A5 north of Dunstable to the M1 at a new junction (J11a).

The private cash means work could start in 2014 – rather than sometime after 2015 as originally feared.

Penning said: “I have said that private investment can help progress transport projects and the £50m contribution to the costs of the A5-M1 link road is an example of this.

“The third party funding significantly improves the return on public investment for this scheme and I am pleased to announce that the public inquiry, which was suspended last year, can be re-started.”

The enquiry will be held in the new year.

The A5-M1 link road scheme was originally due to go to public enquiry in June 2010 but was postponed due to the Government’s Comprehensive Spending Review.

Following the review the project was identified as a “future scheme” for start of work post 2015.

Developers Lands Improvement Holdings and Friends Life Company have put forward private cash for the scheme.

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