posted 3 years ago

A-Roads To Evolve Into Mini-Motorways

Plans To Enhance Road Network

A mini-motorway network could evolve from the nation's most congested A-roads as part of a multi-billion pound modernisation.

An A-road that transforms into a mini-motorway – or expressway - would have some of its traffic lights, roundabouts and junctions removed to enable the traffic to proceed with fewer interruptions.

As with the current motorway network, access could come via a slip road and slow vehicles such as tractors and pedal bikes might be banned. Emergency bays could be built for vehicles that breakdown. 

Road Investment Strategy

The Highways Agency – that will become Highways England from April 1st 2015 – has made the case for the mini-motorway network in its Road Investment Strategy document that it presented to Parliament.

The document argues: “Users of motorways know they can expect a broadly consistent standard from the whole of their road and that this ensures they have a safe, free-moving, journey.” It adds: “The same is not true of A-roads, where piecemeal upgrades have often resulted in inconsistency and substandard stretches of the road that are often less safe and a regular cause of congestion.”

It concluded: “By 2040, we want to have transformed the most important of these routes into expressways: A-roads that can be relied upon to be as well-designed as motorways and which are able to offer the same standard of journey to users.”  This means:

  • “Largely or entirely dual carriageway roads that are safe, well-built and resilient to delay.”
  • “Junctions which are largely or entirely grade separated, so traffic on the main road can pass over or under roundabouts without stopping.”
  • “Modern safety measures and construction standards.”
  • “Technology to manage traffic and provide better information to drivers.”

Mini-Motorway Network Locations

The mini-motorway network could evolve from the: A1 north of Newcastle, A14 from Huntingdon to Cambridge, A556 between M56 and M6, A46 between the A1 and M1, A38 from Exeter to Camborne, A27 along the south coast, A3 south of Guildford and the A2 from south east London to Kent. It would most likely then expand elsewhere. 

Simon Williams, an RAC spokesman, said the concept has “potential” but added: “The devil of the new proposals will be in the detail – what rules will apply to these new types of highway? And how will they be designed in a way that is safe for motorists? A clear national standard on their operation will need to be looked at."


About time someone suggested this. How about reversing all the non sensible slowing down tactics all the local councils have implemented?

The A2 from south east London to Kent is already a motorway in all but name, so that's one done already ;)

SORRY I misread.... it should have been Simon I imed at NOT david

david.... there is no such thing as a "slow lane" on motorways or elsewhere.. the sooner we all forget ernie marples and his "lorry lane" "driving lane" and "fast lane" the better,,, its left lane for driving ANY vehicle and the others for "overtaking" I grew up on the A1 which was made 6 or 8 lane (3 or 4 each way) and was to be "deristricted" (I'm older than national speed limit)... its STILL 30mph and they want it to be 20.... I live on the A49 which WAS 60mph and now 30: 50: 40: 30: 20: 60.... all within 10miles PLUS half a dozen mini roundabouts... I doubt if this plan will ever happen

last year council went down one of the busiest a roads near me placing a shit load of traffic lights and now your gunna remove them fucking joke piss money up every bastard wall

Does this mean the outside lane will be full of slow moving cars and the slow lane empty as usual for UK motorways ?!

Sounds like an old policy "Trunking" brought out of the closet. The result can be crossings removed, roundabouts removed, traffic lights removed, resulting in some communities cut off from various facilities resulting in a lowering of life style standards/house values/safety for some residents, but faster access to somewhere for vehicles - where's the balance? perhaps if they called it "trunking" then perhaps the old guard will re-appear to object to communities being split by wide/fast roads. NAI-U-IAM!