AN investment of over £38million to maintain and improve Staffordshire’s roads over this financial year has been approved this week.
The funding includes an additional £5million specifically to repair road defects following a decision by the county council’s cabinet earlier this year.
Over £30million will pay for the ongoing maintenance and repair of the county’s roads, with the remainder funding a range of improvement and safety schemes across Staffordshire.
Additional funding for larger projects such as the Stafford Western Access Route and the Lichfield Southern Bypass has been allocated by the Government and other organisations.
Road improvement projects scheduled to take place this financial year include safety schemes in Bradwell Lane, Newcastle, Spring Gardens in Leek, Evershed Way in Burton, Yoxall and Great Haywood.
In addition new parking restrictions will be introduced in Dyson Way at Staffordshire Technology Park in Stafford and a traffic management scheme introduced in Kidgsrove. Improvement schemes are also planned for the areas around the rail stations in Kidsgrove, Cannock, Burton, Penkridge and Tamworth.
Walking and cycling improvements will be carried along the River Sow in Stafford, between Burntwood and Chasewater and along the towpath near Fradley Park near Lichfield.
Staffordshire County Council’s cabinet member for highways and transport Helen Fisher said: “Good roads are important for communities and for businesses, not just for getting from A to B safely, but for supporting economic growth and better access to jobs, education and learning.
“Maintaining and investing in our huge 6,000km road network, at a time of enormous pressure on council budgets, remains an issue. The particularly cold winter and bouts of snow also have an impact, both in terms of increasing the cost of gritting our major roads to keep people on the move, but also the growing repair bill for roads damaged by the freezing conditions.
“We are spending more every year on social care and when the income we receive from Government is reducing we have to strike a careful balance on where we spend taxpayers’ money.
“We have committed an extra £5m this year to go some way to tackling the historic backlog of low-risk potholes and this annual plan sets out priorities for further maintenance and investment in our roads.”
The investment was approved at Thursday’s (21 June) cabinet meeting.