Smart Transport

Councils receive funding to improve local roads

Pothole

Councils are to benefit from a multi-million-pound initiative to improve traffic light systems to cut congestion and emissions, while drones and 3D printing technology will be explored by Government to fix potholes.

The package will see councils across England receive a share of £15 million in Government funding to improve their traffic light systems to cut congestion, boost safety and reduce journey times and emissions – a commitment set out in the transport decarbonisation plan.

In addition to the funding, the Government has also published findings from a new initiative - the Digital Intelligence Brokerage (DIB), which aims to speed up research into innovative ways to fix potholes.

The Government said the DIB has ‘made waves’ in this area identifying graphite nanoparticles in asphalt to reduce surface cracks, the use of bio-bitumen materials to create environmentally-friendly road surfaces and automated repair operations.

The 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.”

The Government said £100,000 of funding is also being put towards the Transport Technology Forum.

The open forum is funded by the DfT and Innovate UK and brings together road operators and suppliers from across the industry to offer their skills and experience to help drive technological advances in the traffic management sector.

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