With more cars on the road and less places to squeeze new routes, congestion is becoming a serious issue in the UK. With congestion costing an estimated £2billion per annum (with 25% of these costs attributed to incidents arising from congestion) a solution has been decided upon, with Highways England introducing the motorway to the digital age via “smart motorways”.
Although Highway England propose to add more than 240 miles (480 lane miles) of extra capacity, smart motorways are far more than just additional lanes, they are a technology-driven approach to the use of our motorways.
Smart motorways use pioneering technology to manage traffic at busy times, using the technology to monitor congestion levels, change the speed limit when needed to smooth the traffic flow, activate warning signs to alert users to traffic jams ahead and to close lanes when necessary.
With Highways England already collating evidence of the benefits that a smart motorway scheme can bring, they are confident that the improvements to the infrastructure will reduce frustrating stop-start driving and improve journey reliability. Since the first smart motorway scheme opened to traffic on the M42 motorway in 2006, Highways England has discovered that journey reliability improved by 22 per cent, personal injury accidents reduced by more than half and where accidents did occur, severity was much lower overall with zero fatalities and fewer seriously injured.
As a result of the overwhelmingly positive results Highways England will deliver £15billion of investment in England’s motorways and major A roads as described in the Government’s Road Investment Strategy.
With over £15bn of investment promised toward England’s motorways and major A roads (with £11bn of this capital funding committed between 2015 and 2020) smart motorways are central to the motorway modernisation programme. Works are already underway for the M6, the M1, the M5, and the M4 with proposed work in the pipeline for the A1, the A14 Cambridge to Huntington, the A63 in Hull and the A38 in Derby.
So, are you keen to be a part of the largest upgrade to the U.K.s road network since the 1950’s? Are you the type of person to help lead Britain’s road network into the 21st century? Are you willing to take the opportunity that £11bn worth of investment will offer you over the next half-decade?
If you know you are, contact the Unite People team today and join the revolution!