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Freight Transport And Distribution System (Research)

Volume 975: debated on Friday 7 December 1979

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asked the Minister of Transport what research his Department has undertaken on the impact that the development of the motorway and trunk road programme has had on the cost of freight transport, the distribution system of industry and on lorry traffic.

My Department's normal evaluation of trunk road schemes provides estimates of their efforts individually on both freight transport costs and lorry movements. While without the roads programme of the last 20 years the costs and volume of freight transport and the pattern of industry's distribution system would be very different, little research has been undertaken by my Department directly on its cumulative effects.Studies which bear on the point, however, include "The Economic Consequences of the Severn Bridge and its Associated Motorways" by Cleary and Thomas (published in 1973, Bath University Press), and "Transport and Regional Development: Some Preliminary Results of the M62 Project" by Gwilliam and Judge (published in 1974, Institute for Transport Studies, University of Leeds). We are also contributing to a study of the effect of the motorway network on one firm's business.