More than £13 million for essential maintenance to A35 Redbridge Causeway in Southampton

Motorists, pedestrians and cyclists in Southampton and Hampshire will benefit from better connectivity and new economic and housing opportunities thanks to critical improvements to the A35 Redbridge Causeway Bridges.

Today (Friday 3 June) the Government has announced it will invest £13.4 million to carry out essential maintenance to the A35, preventing the introduction of lane closures and weight restrictions which would result in significant congestion and disruption across the network.

The improvements will generate £340 million in direct economic benefits by supporting the delivery of strategic local housing and job sites for the expansion of the Port of Southampton.

This critical intervention will provide long-term resilience to the M27 and M3 motorway network, while boosting connectivity and employment in key economic hubs across Hampshire such as, Totton, Waterside, and the Marchwood military port.

Being the only direct route for pedestrians and cyclists to cross the River Test, the works to the A35 will improve current cycling and pedestrian facilities while maintaining access to the New Forest National Park.

Roads Minister Baroness Vere said: 

“We are committed to delivering world-class infrastructure in Southampton and Hampshire to ensure the local economy can truly thrive.

“This £13.4 million in funding will improve connectivity and attract crucial economic investment to boost local employment and housing development, while giving motorists, cyclists and pedestrians the modern, safe and uncongested roads they deserve.

The Department for Transport will provide £13.4m towards the project, with Hampshire County Council contributing a further £4.1 million.”

Councillor Edward Heron, Hampshire County Council’s Executive Lead Member for Transport and Environment Strategy, said:

“This is fantastic news. The structures at Redbridge Causeway carry a heavily relied upon transport route – the A35 dual carriageway – over the River Test. We must ensure it can continue to serve Hampshire residents, commuters, visitors and freight traffic for many years to come, so they are able to travel easily to and from the city of Southampton, the New Forest and beyond to the South-West.

“As well as thanking the DfT for this substantial investment towards completing the refurbishment work, I’d also like to acknowledge the role of Transport for South East who assisted us in commending our bid to the Department.”

The investment follows a string of Government measures to encourage active travel and help level up the country by improving road infrastructure. These include £200 million to encourage cycling and walking, more than £5 billion over 2020 to 2025 for highways maintenance and the introduction of a new inspection regime to tackle the plague of potholes.

Cllr Keith Glazier, chair of Transport for the South East, said:

“I am delighted that one of our top priority road schemes is to receive funding from the Department for Transport. Redbridge Causeway provides a vital connection between Southampton and the New Forest waterside area. This investment will help safeguard it for the future, boosting economic growth and supporting important access routes for trade from our international gateways.

“By speaking with one voice to influence where and how money is spent in our region, the Transport for the South East partnership is making a real difference for more than 7.5m people who live and work in the South East.”

The scheme has received final approval, meaning construction can now begin. It is forecast to complete in November 2023.