The impact of road projects in England

This report draws on official evaluations from over 80 road schemes and four original case studies to provide a 20-year ‘long view’ of the impacts of road building.

It finds any benefits of road schemes in terms of congestion relief are short-lived; environmental damage from road schemes is permanent; and there is very little evidence that road schemes deliver economic benefits.

The report documents how the present road-dominated approach to development leads to car-dependent sprawl which is environmentally damaging and afflicted by congestion. It recommends much tighter focusing of development at existing larger settlements that offer facilities close to hand and strong public transport hubs. The report also concludes that the official evaluation process is deeply flawed and recommends Highways England should no longer be evaluator of its own schemes.

Commissioned by CPRE. (2017)

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