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23 June 2022

Plans submitted for the A66 Northern Trans-Pennine route

Cumbria County Council welcomes the progress by National Highways with the submission of their Development Consent Order (DCO) application for the A66 Northern Trans-Pennine project to the Planning Inspectorate (PINS) on 21 June 2022.

To ensure the project maximises the benefits for local communities and businesses along the route in Cumbria, the county council has focused on several key issues within its previous consultation responses, which seek to mitigate concerns and potentially negative impacts of the project. These include:

  • Supporting the delivery of a Scotch corner to Penrith “off A66” route suitable for walking, cycling and horse riding.
  • Providing high quality and dedicated service provision for HGVs along the A66 route.
  • Minimising disruption for local communities and road network during construction works.
  • Ensuring that key junctions, including Kemplay Bank and M6 Junction 40 are improved sufficiently to address current and future congestion.
  • Providing improvements for horse-drawn traffic accessing Appleby Horse Fair on the local road network.
  • Including more and smarter technology across the A66 to bolster resilience.
  • Enhancing the existing strategic diversion routes, specifically the A6 and A685
  • Minimising environmental harm with a clear plan for carbon offsetting.
  • Maximising the socio-economic and legacy benefits and opportunities to train and employ local people.

The county council will review the DCO documents and will have the opportunity to submit representations to raise any outstanding objections or concerns.

An Examination is expected to open in October 2022 and take place over a six-month period, with the Secretary of State’s decision anticipated by the end of 2023.  As part of the Examination process, the county council will be invited to prepare a local impact report setting out the impacts of the scheme upon the local area. 

The project would involve making the entire route between Penrith and Scotch Corner a dual carriageway and deliver significant improvements to the A66 between J40 of the M6 at Penrith and J53 of the A1(M) at Scotch Corner.

The county council has promoted the need for investment in the route over recent years and welcomes the opportunities for boosting local economic growth with improved east-west connectivity to the local, regional and national road network through the package of proposals valued at £1bn.

The full details of the proposed A66 upgrade improvements are available via the Department for Transport website.

                                                                                                                     
Cllr Keith Little, Cumbria County Council’s Cabinet member for Highways and Transport, said:

“I am delighted that the proposals to upgrade the A66 have been welcomed across the county.  The county council has long advocated the need for improvements.

“Our priority is to ensure the project meets the needs of our communities and businesses, and drives economic growth in Cumbria, so we will be looking carefully at the submitted scheme and making appropriate representations at Examination if necessary.

“The county council acknowledges the many potential benefits of the project but will wish to ensure that key issues are properly addressed before giving full backing to the proposed investment.

“We will continue to work closely with the Department for Transport and National Highways to maximise the benefits the project can deliver for local communities and the wider county.”




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Cumbria County Council welcomes the progress by National Highways with the submission of their Development Consent Order (DCO) application for the A66 Northern Trans-Pennine project to the Planning Inspectorate (PINS) on 21 June 2022.