Buckinghamshire Council's £5m roads boost to improve routes hit by HS2 and East West rail
An extra £5million is being put into improving Buckinghamshire's roads. Councillors approved the proposal to boost the amount being spent on the county's road network last week.
The extra cash comes from Buckinghamshire Council's fiscal reserves, and is on top the £100m already committed to being spent on roads over the next four years.
A further £25m will be dedicated to further highway infrastructure in the county, including pavements, drains and street lighting. Council Leader Martin Tett (Conservative, Little Chalfont & Amersham Common) made the announcement at a full council meeting last week. It follows a period of wet and freezing weather that has affected roads in Buckinghamshire.
The decision also takes into account the effect that increased heavy goods traffic has had on the roads thanks to the controversial rail projects underway in the county. Both HS2 and East West Rail lorries have had an impact on the quality of Buckinghamshire roads.
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The money is part of Buckinghamshire Council's 2023/2024 budget, which was approved at the same meeting. Cllr Tett said: "The weather this winter - wet conditions followed by spells of freezing weather - has decimated roads across the whole country.
"It means we’ve seen significant deterioration of our roads this winter, reflected in the number of emergency repairs we’ve done this January – 209 compared to just 27 in the same period last year. Our teams have been working round the clock - those are just the Category 1 emergency works and we’ve also repaired a further 3,142 urgent repairs this January compared to 1,260 last year.
"I know that residents want us to prioritise spending their money on the roads, alongside the other critical services we all rely on, which is why we’ve dedicated the extra £5 million. We are also in constant negotiation with both HS2 and East West Rail so that they can cover the costs of damage on the routes their vehicles use and I’m pleased that recently East West Rail have agreed to repair 12 out of 12 roads we raised with them in the north of the county."