Castle Street A63 upgrade: Work to begin after roads minister gives cash
PRELIMINARY work of the long awaited £150 million Castle Street upgrade has been given the green light.
Roads Minister Mike Penning announced funding has been made available for development work on the A63 in Hull over the next three years.
The work is expected to include detailed design and order preparation, including compulsory purchase orders and public inquiries.
It means the scheme is more likely to be given the go-ahead by ministers in the next spending review period, which begins in mid 2015.
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Castle Street is one of six Highways schemes to be allocated funds for development work today.
Mr Penning said: "We are committed to tackling congestion, keeping traffic moving and supporting the UK economy, putting in money where it's most needed and where the public will get a good return on investment.
"Today, I am confirming development work will be advanced on a further six schemes around the country.
"This means they will be in a good position to be selected for start of works in the early years of the next spending review period."
Previously the Mail revealed the start date for the scheme could be pushed back by three years to 2018 – unless the Government committed to proving funding for this essential preparatory work.
MPs, including Hull West and Hessle MP Alan Johnson, Hull East MP Karl Turner and Brigg and Goole MP Andrew Percy have repeatedly lobbied the Transport Secretary to provide development funds.
There were fears late last year the A63 upgrade had hit the buffers after being omitted from a list of major road projects given the funding go-ahead by the Department for Transport.
The list included two other regional upgrade schemes, including improvements to the A164 between the Humber Bridge and Beverley and the A180 on the South Bank, which were previously below Castle Street in the regional priority order decided by council leaders last year.
Five other projects nationwide, which, like Castle Street, had been earmarked for construction to begin in the next spending review period post 2015, were also given the go-ahead in the Chancellor's autumn statement.