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Road reconstruction projects underway across the county

26 April 2024

Cambridgeshire County Council tackles peat soil affected roads as part of the biggest investment in highways maintenance for over a decade.

As part of the budget proposals agreed earlier this year, the council will invest £43m over the next two years into highways. This will be to deliver improvements which both repair and prevent potholes, improved drainage, preventative work on the roads, footpaths and cycleways including soil affected roads.

A total of £5m was committed to deal with soil affected roads and work has already begun.

Last month, work started on the A1101 Bates Drove in Littleport and will be completed by 9 May. By working with our in-house designers, project managers, contractors and local farmers, the council is carbon consciously repairing roads constructed over fen soils. They are recycling the existing road into the new by re-using the excavated material to form the new road layers and they are using stabilisation grids to manage movement caused by the peat under the road.

Our carbon footprint has been kept to a minimum with no imported aggregate required, very little taken off site and the stabilisation grids will prolong the life of the road. This equates to 7,500m2 of road reconstructed, 5,300 tonnes of recycled material used and over 24 tonnes CO2e of carbon emissions saved - that’s equivalent to the emissions from driving 91,000 miles in an average car.

Cllr Neil Shailer, vice-chair of Highways and Transport Committee at Cambridgeshire County Council, said: “Climate change and extreme weather is taking a huge toll on our soil affected roads. There are a significant and increasing number of roads affected, we have identified a total of 156 roads.

“This is just the beginning and I’m pleased that not only are we starting to tackle soil affected roads as part of our highways investment, we’re also doing this in a way that means we’re being as environmentally sustainable as possible, reducing our carbon emissions and therefore, the impact on our climate.

“We will continue to do what we can locally to maintain and keep these roads safe. However, we believe we’ll need around £300m to fully address this national issue, extra investment is desperately needed, and we need support from our local MPs and government to tackle this issue properly.”

Between now and next year, we have another nine locations to focus on, including the A1123 Hill Row Causeway, A603 Cambridge Road, B1050 Shelfords Road and B1049 Twenty Pence Road. Last year, the A10 at Milton and the A141 Fenland Way in Chatteris was completed.

Our highways team will be working hard to keep disruption to a minimum and carrying out general maintenance work at the same time, such as vegetation clearance, drainage, signage, and road markings.