Prime Minister must come clean on road privatisation toll plans - Maria Eagle

19 March 2012

Maria EagleMaria Eagle MP, Labour’s Shadow Transport Secretary, responding to the Prime Minister's speech on infrastructure, said:
 
"The Prime Minister's double-speak gives the impression that his privatisation plans will only see tolls applied to new roads. Yet he has redefined new roads to include anything that adds capacity including road widening and junction improvements. Motorists will rightly consider that to be a clear plan for charging for existing roads.
 
"The Government's plans leave more questions than answers. Will the charge apply to the whole upgraded road or just to any additional lane? Will that mean we are heading for a two tier road network, with those unable to afford the tolls left in the slow lane? Either way, these plans are likely to simply drive traffic onto local roads, increase congestion and emissions while yet again setting back efforts to improve safety.
 
"The Prime Minister needs to come clean and admit his plans for privatisation will affect existing roads as well as new ones, and could lead to drivers up and down the country seeing the cost of driving spiral even higher."