By KLTV Newsdesk –
The Highways Capital Plan, a detailed programme of road and highways works which would be implemented over the next two years, is to be considered by Kirklees Council’s cabinet.
The plan details investment in various areas including:
- Road surfacing
- Street lighting
- Road safety
- Flood management and drainage
- Traffic signals
- Car parks
- Public transport provision
Investment in active travel through walking and cycling will also be encouraged through the plan.
Over £12m was originally proposed in the plan for 2021/22. This has increased to over £22m with the inclusion of the Local Transport Plan funding, the Council funded Locality based unclassified roads programme and other various grants.
The Council says the funding will help to improve the condition of the highway network across the borough.
Not just limited to the 1900km of roads, Kirklees’s current highways network also comprises of:
- 2333km of pavements and cycleway
- 754 bridges, larger culverts, subways and retaining/other walls
- 58,805 streetlights
- 250km established drains
- 75,653 gullies plus other items such as road markings and street furniture
The investment will also see the continued replacement of streetlights to be more energy efficient.
To date, the council says they have converted around 82% of its streetlights from the traditional orange glow to new white LED ones.
This provides a 60% saving in energy used and corresponding reductions in carbon being generated.
This all goes towards the council’s commitment to its carbon-neutral target, as declared as part of Kirklees Climate Emergency in 2019.
A specific grant award from the Department for Transport was added to the existing investment to repair potholes or resurface roads to help prevent potholes from forming.
Additionally, the capital plan includes investment in sustainable alternatives to car use, which the council says is a key element supporting the road map for a carbon-neutral Kirklees by 2038.
The Integrated Public Transport provision aims to support small scale improvements to bus services that improve reliability and accessibility, with the cycling and walking elements supporting the development of active travel initiatives across Kirklees.
Speaking on the potential approval of the plans, Councillor Naheed Mather, Cabinet Member for Environment said: “The maintenance and improvements to our highways network are vital for the development of Kirklees as a place where people want to live, work and visit.
“Climate change and air quality are a key consideration with all our highways projects.
“If the funding is approved, this huge investment across multiple schemes, will in most cases, provide dual impact and benefit to everyone, and not just those who use our highways.”
A decision will be made at Cabinet at the beginning of June.