Cash For M1 Improvements

1 November 2011, 12:02 | Updated: 1 November 2011, 12:11

Money's been promised by the government to help pay for improvements to Junction 10a of the M1, near Luton.

Luton Borough Council have been promised a share of £950m that's being offered in grants from the Regional Growth Fund.  In total, more than a hundred projects across England will benefit.

The funding from the government won't completely pay for the proposed developments, and extra money will have to be found to meet the shortfall.  The exact amounts of money involved haven't been revealed.

Councillor Roy Davis from Luton Borough Council said "This is excellent news which brings us a step closer towards delivering a number of major economic regeneration opportunities in Luton.

"The M1 Junction 10a improvements scheme is an essential part of the infrastructure required to help deliver the sustainable economic and mployment growth that is much needed in this area.

"In recent years the Highways Agency has issued holding directives on many development sites in Luton, instructing the Council not to grant planning permission because of concerns over traffic levels at Junction 10a.

"Approval for the M1 Junction 10a improvements scheme would enable Luton to fully share the benefits of the Highways Agency’s recent £800 million investment in the M1 in this area.

"It could also help facilitate potential development at London Luton Airport and unlock up to 900 jobs that could be created from the relocation of Northern and Shell’s operations for the Express newspaper group."

The existing junction is a large roundabout and there are normally big delays at peak times.  If the improvements are approved, work could begin early in 2013 and be completed during 2014.