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Lord Burns to lead North Wales Transport Review

Yr Arglwydd Burns i arwain Adolygiad Trafnidiaeth Gogledd Cymru

A new transport commission that will develop a pipeline of transport schemes for north Wales has been announced today by the Deputy Minister for Climate Change, Lee Waters.

The North Wales Transport Commission follows the model of the commission set-up after the cancellation of the M4 relief road in south east Wales and will also be led by Lord Terry Burns, former Permanent Secretary of the UK Treasury.

The announcement follows recommendations from the Welsh Government’s Roads Review Panel and the recently published Union Connectivity Review by Network Rail Chair Sir Peter Hendy for a ‘multi-modal’ review of the A55 corridor.

The year-long review will develop recommendations for road, rail, bus and active travel across the whole of north Wales.

This step follows on from the advice of the Roads Review Panel to cancel current plans for the A55 Junction 14/15 and 16/16A improvements scheme, which Ministers have agreed. It has also now been agreed which further schemes the Panel will consider as part of their final report due this summer.

Deputy Minister for Climate Change, Lee Waters said:

“If we are serious about facing up to the Climate Emergency, we have to be willing to do things differently, and critically to give people across north Wales genuine alternatives to using their cars for most journeys.

“As well as looking at the A55 corridor, the North Wales Transport Commission will also look at how we can improve sustainable transport options in rural areas. This will need a shift of investment towards public transport and I’m very pleased Lord Burns has agreed to lead a panel of local experts to set out a detailed list of projects that will be needed to make this a reality.

“This does not mean the end of road building, but it does mean a greater emphasis on looking after the roads we already have as well as investing in alternatives to give people a real choice.”

Notes to editors

On 22 June 2021 the Welsh Government announced a review of all new road schemes which they funded and subsequently established a Roads Review Panel comprising independent experts in transport policy, climate change, highway engineering and the freight and logistics sector.

The Roads Review Panel, chaired by Dr Lynn Sloman MBE, has set criteria for when new roads are the right solutions for transport problems, in line with Llwybr Newydd, the Wales Transport Strategy.

All new proposed road investment is being considered by the Panel, with some exceptions: Road investment in-line with our statutory duties, existing contractual obligations, where construction work is too advanced to cease and investment within the boundary of heavy industry have not been included.

Full details of the North Wales Transport Commission will be published in due course.

Related Links:

  • Roads Review (including full list of schemes in scope)  - English / Welsh 
  • Roads Review Panel reports (including initial report and A55 decision) - English / Welsh