Mouchel Hyder JV wins deal to assess feasibility of the trans Pennine tunnel

First move to improve road connections in the north with beefed up highway connections between Manchester and Sheffield was announced yesterday when a Mouchel/Hyder joint venture won the £1.3M contract to assess the viability of a Trans-Pennine tunnel.

The project was identified in the Roads Investment Strategy and would be key to developing the Chancellor’s Northern Powerhouse concept by providing better links between England’s northern cities.

This strategic study, one of a number of studies which will help identify solutions to tackle congestion and act as an enabler to economic growth has been commissioned by the Department for Transport (DfT) and Transport for the North (TfN).

It will investigate the strategic and economic case for a new high-standard highway route between Manchester and Sheffield, including  assessing the potential opportunities of combining with a rail or light rail link. It is anticipated that the new route will cross the Pennines and the Peak District National Park by means of a road tunnel which will extend for several miles in length.

Mouchel/Hyder will help carry our further study work prior to the options stage so the viability of the proposed Trans Pennine Tunnel can be fully understood.

 “As part of our long-term economic plan we are investing a record £13 billion in transport for the North and North-East. Today’s announcement will look at building stronger links between Manchester and Sheffield, meaning more jobs and opportunities for people across the region,” said roads minister Andrew Jones.

Transport for the North sees the feasibility contract as vital first step to better transport provision in the region.

"We welcome this important milestone and look forward to the commencement of the study which is a key element of both the RIS 1 programme and Transport for the North's longer-term transport strategy as set out in March 2015,” said Transport for the North lead officer Dr Jon Lamonte. “We look forward to continued working with Highways England and the Department for Transport to deliver the vision for a Northern Powerhouse.”


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