M25 has 40% overload
If you've noticed an error in this article please click here to report it so we can fix it.
• Latest Department of Transport figures reveal that traffic levels on sections of the M25 are more than 40% above the DTp's own revised figures, published in 1984.
The highest average daily weekday flow, of 142,000 vehicles, was measured in May this year between junctions 13 and 14. In all, 21 of the M25's 29 sections carried an average weekday flow above the department's forecast of 85,000 vehicles.
These figures are bound to increase pressure on the Government to widen more sections of the M25 when it begins a review in October — a year after the orbital route was completed.
The British Road Federation, however, warns that widening the motorway may not be enough, and could prove costly on those sections where the DTp does not own the land needed for road widening. "The Government has got two options," says Richard Diment of BRF: "Widen the existing motorway — or build a second orbital ring, perhaps around 30-35 miles out from central London."
BRF will also be pressing the DTp to speed up the building of the new Thames bridge at Dartford: "Traffic flow figures show that delays at Dartford are holding traffic flows on the eastern side of the motorway," says Diment, "forcing traffic onto the busier western side."
0 The Dartford-Thurrock Crossing Bill is currently being considered by the House of Commons select committee on Transport. The Bill received its second reading on 9July.