Friday, 15 June 2012

Cambridge MP Huppert Tells Minister: Don't Make A14 A Toll Road


MP Julian Huppert has impressed upon Transport Minister, Mike Penning that the A14 should not be turned into a toll road.

Julian met with Mr Penning yesterday (Thursday, June 14) and discovered there are six proposals for the future of the road, five of which involve tolling.

“I and others will have to look carefully through the options to decide which, if any, are workable,” he said. “I made it clear that I would want a detailed traffic model of the effects on Cambridge roads; the previous ideas, as well as being more expensive, would also have increased Cambridge traffic unacceptably. We have to be sure that these new proposals will make things better for Cambridge, not worse.

“I also made it clear to the Minister that I was very uncomfortable with the idea of a toll road as a replacement; I hope this can be avoided.”

Julian was also delighted that shortly after his meeting the government announced more details of how it would spend the £20 million allocated for essential short-term improvements to the road.

“I expect to see junction improvements, public transport improvements and hopefully a breakdown service to remove vehicles quickly and free up the road,” he added. “I’ve been arguing this for over a decade – I’m delighted we will finally see action.”

He also welcomed the broader results of the longer-term A14 challenge which included proposals on rail freight, to take heavy vehicles off the road, and improvements to public transport.

“I have been advocating this for years,” he said. “It’s good to see that at last there is real progress on the A14, looking at the broad needs, and money available to carry out the work.”