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Highways England confirms new smart motorways

Date: 22 July 2015   |   Author: Tristan Young

Highways England has confirmed nine new 'smart' motorway projects to add hard shoulder running and variable speed limits to boost road capacity.

Over the next three years Highways England will spend more than £1.5 billion on these nine projects, plus a tenth project on the M1 that had been announced earlier this year.

The M1 upgrade between junctions 16-19, the M6 J16-19 and the M5 J4a-6 will be the first to start in the autumn.

These will be followed by two further sections of the M1 between J13-16 and J24-25 as well as the M4 between J3-12 will be started in 2016, while the final four sections (M6 J2-4, M6 J13-15, M20 J3-5 and M23 J8-10) will be started in 2017.

A Highways England spokesman said: "The schemes will see 292 extra lane miles added to motorways. The hard shoulder will be converted to a traffic lane and signing and technology will tell drivers what speed to drive at, if lanes are blocked or closed and about incidents up ahead."