What Huntingdon’s roads could look like when A14 viaduct is demolished

Life after the viaduct: The proposed route of the de-trunked A14 at Huntingdon

Life after the viaduct: The proposed route of the de-trunked A14 at Huntingdon - Credit: Archant

HERE is the plan for a crucial section of the £1.5billion A14 upgrade, which planners say will put drivers off using Huntingdon as a rat run.

Designed to cope with 60,000 vehicles a day, up to 85,000 currently sweep around the town on the raised dual carriageway.

Once the Huntingdon southern bypass is open, the Highways Agency is ­proposing to demolish the viaduct over Brampton Road and connect the existing A14 to local roads.

It is anticipated the majority of motorists will use the new road and pay the toll charge, likely to be £1-£1.50 for cars and double that for lorries.

At Huntingdon, the rest will have to leave the dual carriageway and use new junctions joining it with the ring road, Brampton Road and Hinchingbrooke Park Road.

Graham Hughes, Cambridgeshire County Council’s director of strategy and development, said it was important not to give through traffic any incentive to use the old route through Huntingdon.

The proposed road layout, he said, was similar to what was put forward in the A14 scheme abandoned by the Government in 2010.

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“Huntingdonshire ­District Council made it absolutely clear that removing the ­viaduct was an absolute must,” he said.

“One of the elements a huge amount of work went into was, if the viaduct came down, how do you tie the ends of what would be a local road into the Huntingdon road network.

“It was very sensitive about providing sufficient local access and not incentivising people to drive up to Huntingdon and back on to the A1.

“A lot of modelling work was carried out. Through traffic should go via the new link, although geographically it’s a bit of a detour from the current layout.”

The existing A14 is due to be de-trunked and will become the responsibility of the county council. Mr Hughes said details were still being worked on but would include securing funding from the HA for short-term maintenance issues.