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MPs call for further improvements to M20 Smart Motorway

Malling and Aylesford MPs have united to try and prevent motorway improvements affecting local lives.

Residents living near junction three to five of the M20 have been living with an increasingly loud motorway, after trees blocking the motorway with nearby homes were cut in February.

Highways England had pledged to resurface the two outside lanes of the motorway to cut the sound impact.

Part of the M20 is being transformed into a smart motorway. Stock picture. (1441752)
Part of the M20 is being transformed into a smart motorway. Stock picture. (1441752)

But Tonbridge and Malling MP Tom Tugendhat, together with Chatham and Aylesford MP Tracey Crouch, have called for further mitigation.

The Tory MPs have written to Jim O'Sullivan, chief executive of Highways England, calling for the middle two lanes of the new smart motorway to be surfaced while construction continues on the scheme.

Once built, the £92million scheme will add an extra lane of traffic by replacing the hard shoulder, while Highways England also plans to build five new emergency refuge areas, emergency roadside telephones and CCTV cameras.

MP Tom Tugendhat
MP Tom Tugendhat

In a joint statement, the MPs said: "Since Highways England began works on the smart motorway between Junctions 3 and 5 of the M20, a number of trees have been cut down to allow for the construction of the project.

"This will be mitigated by a very quiet road surface being laid on the carriageway.

"However, Highways England currently only plan to do part of the road, and not two of the four lanes.

Tracey Crouch, Conservative MP for Chatham and Aylesford.
Picture: Andy Payton
Tracey Crouch, Conservative MP for Chatham and Aylesford. Picture: Andy Payton

"That’s why we have written to their chief executive to ask for a rethink.

"It seems sensible to do all the lanes while the works are taking place, particularly as the existing surface is nearing the end of its useful life and the other lanes are being completed. Let’s hope Highways England bosses see sense."

Highways England have been contacted for comment.

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