The A46 corridor

One of the country's most important trade routes, the A46 corridor performs an important local, regional and national function, but it's not always doing its job. For the first time, Midlands Connect is taking a long-term corridor approach to improving the A46 through the region, and calling for urgent and coordinated investment to improve traffic flows.

What is the scheme?

Stretching for 155 miles from Gloucestershire to Lincolnshire, the A46 corridor is home to 5.5 million people and 2.9 million jobs, with an economic output of £115 billion, nearly 10% of the English economy.

Its economy is dominated by road-reliant industries like advanced manufacturing, automotive, aerospace, agriculture, distribution and textiles. With ports at either end of the corridor and East Midlands Airport (the UK's largest pure cargo airport) close by, the A46 is a nationally significant trade and export route.

With 600,000 new residents, 150,000 new jobs and 250,000 new homes expected within the corridor by 2041, only a comprehensive, holistic solution to improving the A46 can support this growth.

Our 20 year vision for the route could boost the economy by £7.1 billion over 60 years by targeting investment at key congestion hotspots, including Evesham, Stratford-upon-Avon, Coventry, Leicester, Newark and Lincoln.


What happens next?

We are working hard to make this potential a reality.

Through the Road Investment Strategy 2, published in March 2020, the Department for Transport has committed to: "improving the A46 ‘Trans-Midlands Trade Corridor’ between the M5 and the Humber Ports. Work in RP2 will create a continuous dual carriageway from Lincoln to Warwick, delivering one of Midlands Connect’s key priorities."

The government has committed to constructing the A46 Newark Bypass, which we have spent years campaigning for, alongside our partners in the East Midlands. The bypass will complete the dual carriageway of the A46 all the way from Leicester to its junction with the A1 in Newark.

RIS2 also includes a commitment to start the improvement of the A46 Coventry junctions at Binley and Walsgrave by 2025. 

The second stage of our A46 study will examine specific sections for more detailed development of further possible interventions.

£115 billion value of output produced by businesses in the corridor

22% of goods and services produced on the A46 corridor are exported

65% of businesses surveyed on the corridor say they would create new jobs if the A46 was improved

Businesses backing A46 improvements

“Motorists and freight are already using the A46 as an alternative to the motorway network between the South West and the East Midlands. At the moment, the A46 often can’t cope with those traffic levels; with more investment and improvements, it could become a proper alternative.”

Richard Crook, Operations Director, Karndean Designflooring, Evesham

Midlands Connect,
19th Floor,
Studio 3,
Alpha Tower,
Suffolk Street Queensway,
Birmingham, B1 1TT

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