Expressway – the process, and where are we now?

Link to NAWPEG page

Link to NHPC Expressway Working Group page

The Oxford to Cambridge Expressway project is being managed by Highways England, and in addition to the proposed road connections from south of Oxford through to Cambridge (a mixture of new roads and upgrades to current roads) there is an associated Growth Arc covering wide swathes of land around any final chosen route for the Expressway, which the Government hopes would hugely boost the economy in this region through a massive increase in housing, industry and other infrastructure.

The initial ideas for an Expressway originated in studies and research in the period from December 2014 up to November 2017 during which potential corridors for an Expressway were identified, roughly aligned with the East West Rail route in the area between Oxford and the M1 at Milton Keynes, which is considered the most poorly connected section of the road network.

Consultation with selected stakeholders (primarily County, District and City Councils) resulted in a Strategic Outline Business Case report in 2018, on the back of which corridor B (using either B1 or B3 for the section around Oxford – see map below) was selected as the preferred corridor. Detailed work on establishing the viability of potential routes within this corridor has been carried out in the period since then, with the aim of putting forward about 6 or 7 routes for public consultation originally planned for late 2019 (now due to occur sometime after the December 2019 General Election). A single preferred route is then due to be announced later in 2020 followed by a further round of public consultation.