A call will be made tonight (Wednesday) for Huntingdonshire District Council to formally back an upgrade of the A1.
In December, the Government announced it is to investigate the possibility of improving the A1 between Brampton and the Black Cat roundabout and Baldock to motorway standard.
Tonight (Wednesday), Councillor Terry Hayward, who represents Buckden, will ask HDC’s full council to seek commitment from the Government and the Highways Agency to undertake a comprehensive study of options for the A1 south of the proposed A1/A14 junction at Brampton and it will be developed, funded and constructed at the earliest opportunity.
Additionally, Cllr Hayward, also chairman of the Buckden and Southoe A1 Safety Advisory group, will call on HDC to form an A1 alliance with key partners, neighbouring authorities, the Highways Agency and MPs to lobby the Government.
“Since the M1 to Leeds and then the A1 north of that has been seen as the strategic route to the north, the A1 through Huntingdonshire has becoe something of a forgotten route,” Cllr Hayward’s motion says.
“The need for improvements is no ore acute than at Buckden roundabout where the district council’s own infrastructure study has show that it is a significant constraint to growth as well as the road being a blight on the lives of the residents of Buckden, Diddington and Southoe.
“The recent Highways Agency route-based strategy investigations for the A1 is due to publish its final recommendations in March. The initial report has shown that between London and Leeds, this section of the A1 represents one of the 10 most least reliable journey time locations on the route. Additionally, the report highlights the poor network performance in the peak hours, safety concerns and congestion on the route through Buckden.”
He adds: “The existing route lacks the capacity to accommodate current and future travel demands as well as planned growth and a comprehensive approach is needed for the for a wholesale upgrading of the route to motorway standard because piecemeal improvement schemes would not offer a satisfactory solution addressing both strategic and local needs.
“While there are planned improvements to the A14 and A428 it is important that similar improvements on this section of the A1 are brought forward as soon as possible so that the route does not act as a barrier to the future growth and prosperity of the area.”
Soon after the A1 announcement, Huntingdon MP Jonathan Djanogly set up a petition showing support for the improvement scheme, which has been signed by more than 800 people.
INFORMATION: To sign the petition, visit www.surveymonkey.com/s/A1upgrade.