Study into M62 project benefits

Traffic queues after RTA on M62 near Brighouse.
Traffic queues after RTA on M62 near Brighouse.

Thousand of pounds will be put into an extended feasability study for the potential for the new M62 junction 24a at Rastrick.

In a report to the West Yorkshire Combined Authority investment committee, an additional £700,000 has been requested from the West Yorkshire Plus Transport Fund for the study.

The inclusion of Junction 24a M62 performed well in the initial round of Urban Dynamic Modelling (UDM) and was considered part of the core package to be taken forward through the WY+TF.

The project had been earmarked as an ‘early win’ project to be delivered by 2021.

During the initial scoping phase of the WY+TF, Highways England expressed interest in the scheme concept and potential benefits that it may offer to the Strategic Road Network in terms of congestion relief on the mainline motorway and at junctions 24 and 25.

However, due to the scheme not being included in the Roads Investment Strategy or Highways England Delivery Plan, they could not fund any initial feasibility work proposed.

Works to date have been led by Kirklees Council who have liaised at each staged with Highways England to discuss and review identified benefits and outputs from the UDM.

There has been a significant amount of feasibility work undertaken to date and a preferred option has been identified.

Following a presentation to the Highways England Yorkshire, Humber and North East Regional Programme Board (RPB), it concluded that greater assurance on the potential scheme impacts and benefits was required.

The scope for this extended feasibility study has been discussed and agreed by officers from Highways England, Kirklees and Calderdale districts and the WYCA and will cover elements to include economic, social and wider impacts, and a better understanding of the role of Junction 24a in supporting the growth development in local authority areas.

The West Yorkshire Plus Transport Fund will undertake an extended feasibility study with works to be completed later this year.