One of Cambridgeshire's oddest traditions gets under way this morning...
Plans To Spend £5m To Cut Congestion In Portsmouth
Plans for an additional £5m of investment in Portsmouth's roads due to be decided by councillors as part of the city council's capital budget on 9th February.
The idea is to make improvements to the city centre road scheme with a new layout to improve the flow of traffic in and out of Portsmouth and maximise the city's development potential.
The new funding for the project, which would see improvements from the M275 to Unicorn Gate, would sit alongside £12m of capital funding allocated by the council in previous capital budgets, giving a total of around £15m for the city centre road scheme.
This should put the council in a position to progress the scheme by securing additional funding through bids to organisations like central government or the Solent Local Enterprise Partnership.
Other transport schemes expected to be included are improvements to the Eastern corridor road network, sustainable transport projects and strategic transport planning.
Cllr Donna Jones, Leader of Portsmouth City Council, said:
"Revamping the M275 entrance to Portsmouth with a new city centre road has to be a big priority for the council and I hope my colleagues will back giving additional funding to this scheme when it is put in front of them. I'm delighted that money from the prudent management of our debt obligations has allowed us to put funds towards this project."
Cllr Jim Fleming, the council's Cabinet Member for Traffic & Transportation, said: "The project is likely to cost upwards of £40m in total but having £15m already allocated will be a big boost to our chances of securing additional funding from other agencies.
"In the meantime we will be looking at improving traffic flows through to the Eastern Road to make sure it is keeping traffic moving as well as possible and also improving access at junctions and making roads safer for vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians."
The transport schemes are going to be considered as part of the council's capital budget which invests in a range of infrastructure schemes throughout the city like buildings and facilities, rather than the day-to-day running of council services that have to be paid through a separate revenue budget.
In total the council will consider proposals for more than £20m of council funding that could attract further funding and bring in over £150m of capital investment to the city.
The council's cabinet will review the capital budget proposals at a meeting on 9 February before they go to the full council meeting on 14 February for all councillors to consider.
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