Edwina Hart, Minister for Economy, Science and Transport
This written statement provides an update on the study I commissioned last year regarding potential improvement options for the A40.
The study was undertaken in two parts, the first of which considered the existing and future traffic conditions, engineering options for improvements and costs. The second part involved consideration of the wider economic impacts to the region of dualling the A40 and included consultation with businesses in the area.
The study considered impacts on areas currently served by the A40 such as Haverfordwest, Milford Haven and Fishguard and the A477 such as Pembroke Dock and the south-coast tourism destinations.
The study reached a number of conclusions including that dualling of the A40 could provide positive returns in the longer term.
The study also found that there was a strong case for bringing forward a package of measures on the A40, in addition to the A40 Llanddewi Velfrey to Penblewin scheme, to improve traffic conditions between St Clears and Haverfordwest.
The measures would involve using the 2+1 layout currently working well on the recently completed A40 Robeston Wathen Bypass and the A477 at Llanddowror. These measures could be delivered in the short to medium term and would be developed to allow upgrading to dualling in the future.
It is my intention to progress delivery of the A40 Llanddewi Velfrey to Penblewin scheme as soon as possible and to appoint an Employer’s Agent to develop an additional package of improvements for the A40.
European structural funds are being set aside to support delivery of the Llanddewi Vefrey to Penblewin scheme. Officials will explore with the EU the feasibility of additional contributions from other sources of funding to support delivery of the additional package of measures.
The study also concluded that addressing the perceived problems on the A40 would only form part of the solution to improving access to the Haven Waterway Enterprise Zone and Murco site. Congestion at Haverfordwest and along the A4076 is also an issue. I therefore also intend to work with Pembrokeshire County Council to consider options for improvements in this area.
I will ensure that the benefits of the proposals implemented are fully evaluated once in place and that the findings are used in the development of further options to improve transport links along the A40 and A477.