Transport Secretary Grant Shapps today announced a multimillion-pound scheme to improve traffic signals and explore the use of drones to help fix local roads.
The package will see councils across England receive a share of £15m in government funding to improve their traffic light systems to cut congestion, boost safety and reduce journey times and emissions.
The Government has also published the findings from a new initiative called the Digital Intelligence Brokerage (DIB), which aims to encourage more work with small and medium enterprises outside of the transport sector and to speed up research into new and innovative ways to fix potholes.
This work supports wider government commitments to use advanced technology, such as drones to spot defects in roads and 3D printing to repair cracks.
Transport secretary Grant Shapps said: ‘Whether you’re a motorist, cyclist or pedestrian, every road-user across our country deserves the best possible journey. That’s why, despite already having some of the best and safest roads in the world, this Government is providing millions of pounds to improve them further still.
‘This vital funding and work will cut journey times for millions of people, reduce emissions and keep the UK at the forefront of technological developments in roads maintenance as we continue to invest in local economies and build back both better and greener from the pandemic.’
RAC head of roads policy Nicholas Lyes said: ‘Additional investment to cut congestion and make pothole repairs better for the future is very welcome.
‘Improving traffic lights can make a significant difference to local roads by efficiently maximising the number of vehicles that can safely pass through junctions while hitting a pothole can be an expensive and even a dangerous experience.
‘We look forward to seeing how drivers and road users more widely can benefit from the use of 21st-century technology to repair their local roads more quickly.’