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Motorways, North-East

Volume 163: debated on Monday 4 December 1989

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46.

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what is the expected road life of existing motorways in the north-east of England; and if he will make a statement.

Since the Department's standards for highway design were revised in 1985, motorways have been built to last, with appropriate maintenance, for 40 years before having to be reconstructed. Before that time bituminous roads were generally built to last on average 20 years and concrete roads 40 years. The actual life of particular motorways or sections of motorways depends upon a number of factors, notably the volume and weight of traffic using them, and may vary significantly. The condition of motorways is routinely monitored to identify deterioration and the need for major maintenance. An announcement about the 1990–91 programme of major maintenance will be made as usual around the end of March.