Britain’s biggest road project – the new Cambridge to Huntingdon A14 - opened today (Tuesday 5 May), eight months ahead of schedule. The £1.5billion scheme, for which work began back in 2016, was not set to be completed until the end of this year.
A14 Cambridge to Huntingdon upgrade opens ahead of schedule
Highways England says the Spring opening date marks the end of permanent roadworks and reduced speed limits on the new A14 and A1307, but there are still a number of completion activities to carry out, such as landscaping, installing new technology and other off-road tasks. To carry out this work safely, some temporary overnight closures or off-peak daytime lane closures will be needed.
The 12-mile Huntingdon southern bypass opened to traffic in December 2019, one year ahead of schedule, and has now been part of over 5 million journeys. This was a key milestone for the project and included the closure of the old A14 (now the A1307) between Godmanchester and Spittals in both directions to allow work to remove the Huntingdon viaduct to begin. This section will remain closed until all work in Huntingdon is complete and the new roads are tied in to the existing road network.
Highways England chief executive Jim O’Sullivan said: "The A14 is a vital route used by 85,000 drivers every day and including more than 21,000 hauliers transporting essential goods around the country. Opening this scheme more than six months early and on budget shows what the UK construction industry can achieve working with Highways England on the Strategic Road Network. I would like to thank them for their focus on our joint success and for their one team approach.
"Also, I would like to thank road users, residents and stakeholders for their patience and support during our work. This road is not just a piece of national infrastructure - it brings benefits to the region and local towns and communities too."
Cambridge Network's Executive Director Claire Ruskin took a group of business leaders (pictured below) to see the working practices and meet some of the inspiring team members: “We were very impressed with how the work was ahead of schedule and within budget, despite being a complex project with a huge team. Many Cambridge projects are ‘invisibly complex’, such as software developments, novel drug or chip designs, and we found useful insights from this very visible project.”
Today's announcement from Highways England came in the form of a tweet, which read: