Just before Christmas the government announced their £6bn road repair programme to help maintain and improve hundreds of highways across the UK. However recent review of the budget have suggested that the promise of £6bn, by transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin, may not stretch far enough to achieve noticeable improvement of UK roads due to existing Council road debts.
In recent years several councils have conducted work that has resulted in mass amounts of debts, something which the £6bn will have to cover. Among the highest of these accumulated debts includes Leeds, who owe almost £100M through their ongoing works, Islington have built up £79M, whilst Gloucestershire owe over £86M in repayments. Looking at just six councils there is a total of £423M built up in repayments which will come out of the government’s new £6bn budget.
Councils have reported thousands of potholes needing repair, demonstrating the strong requirement for this £6bn repair fund as well as the reality that it may not go as far as the government originally hoped, especially when considering the aforementioned backlogs.
Local Government Association transport spokesperson Peter Box has said “While helpful, this new money does not bridge the overall funding gap which is increasing year on year.” Whilst a spokesperson for Leeds City Council said “Despite further funding recently being made available to tackle this problem, which is welcome, it is not enough to see a dramatic turnaround in road conditions and will still mean we have to prioritise our work in the areas most in need.”
With this new budget there are plenty of opportunities working on highway projects and we are currently recruiting for the following positions:
Highway Engineer- Leeds
Highway Engineer- Exeter
Highway CAD Technician- London
For more information about any of the above positions please click the links or call our civil & structural team on 02392 603030.
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