UK Politics

At-a-glance: Infrastructure projects

The government has set out how £100bn will be spent from 2015-2020 on building new infrastructure. Many of these projects have already been announced - here is a full breakdown of the main plans.


The government plans to spend £28bn on Britain's roads by 2020-21, with £10bn of that going on repairs.

Ministers will green light all existing new road schemes and carry out feasibility studies at "notorious" congestion hotspots such as the A303 to the South West, the A27 on the south coast, the A1 north of Newcastle, the A1 Newcastle-Gateshead Western by-pass, connectivity to Leeds airport and trans-Pennine routes between Sheffield and Manchester.

There are also plans to add extra lanes to motorways and open hard shoulders to traffic during busy periods as part of its "managed motorways" programme.

There are dozens of projects in the pipeline, including:

North-East of England

Construction of Testos junction flyover connecting the A19 to A184 south of Newcastle - subject to value for money and deliverability

A19/A1058 coast road near Newcastle improving access to Port of Tyne and major employment sites - subject to value for money and deliverability

A1 upgrade Works Lobley Hill - completion 2016-17

Yorkshire and Humber

A63 Castle Street access improvements to the Port of Hull to relieve congestion and improve safety - subject to value for money and deliverability

A160/180 Immingham dualing scheme - completion 2016-17

A1 Leeming to Barton - converting dual carriageway into 3 lanes - completion 2016-17

North West of England

Managed motorway schemes on the M60 J24-27 and 1-4, the M62 J10-12, the M56 J6-8, and the M6 J16-19 and 21a-26

£814m Mersey Gateway Bridge project to be backed by government investment guarantee, to enable construction to begin early next year

West Midlands

Managed motorway schemes on M5 J4a-6 south of Birmingham, M1 J13-19 Rugby, M6 J2-4 and J13-15

M54/M6 toll link road - subject to securing private funding

East Midlands

A38 Derby junction improvements - subject to value for money and deliverability

M1 J24-25 managed motorway scheme at Long Eaton - subject to value for money and deliverability

M1 J28-31 accelerated delivery pilot

East of England

A14 Huntingdon to Cambridge - subject to value for money and deliverability

A5-M1 new link road - completion 2015-16

M25 J30 improvement works - starts 2014-15, completion TBA

Lower Thames Crossing

London and the South-East of England

M4 J3-12 London to Reading managed motorway scheme

M23 J8-10 managed motorway scheme near Gatwick

Managed motorway schemes on the M20 J3-5 Maidstone, M27 J4-11 and the M3 J9-14 near Southampton

A21 upgrade Tonbridge to Pembury - subject to value for money and deliverability

A27 Chichester Bypass junction upgrades - subject to value for money and deliverability

M20 J10a, A2 Ebbsfleet Junction, A2 Bean

Lower Thames Crossing

Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland

Responsibility for road building is devolved to national assemblies


High Speed 2, linking London with the Midlands and North of England, is the biggest rail infrastructure project on the government's books, £42.6bn (in 2011 prices) for construction costs and £7.5bn for rolling stock.

Separately, the government has outlined plans to spend more than £16bn on maintaining and extending Britain's railway network between 2014 to 2019. Schemes in the pipeline include:

North-East of England

Increased rail capacity on East Coast Mainline

Replacing old Intercity 125 trains

Yorkshire and Humber

Transpennine electrification

Additional rail capacity in Sheffield and Leeds

"Electrified spine": A new electrified passenger and freight corridor linking the core centres of population and business in Yorkshire and the Midlands with ports in the south of England

North West of England

Northern Hub rail link upgrade programme

Trans-Pennine electrification, creating better east-west links from Liverpool to Newcastle

Major improvements allowing direct services across Manchester, including a new island platform at Manchester Piccadilly and a substantial modernisation of Manchester Victoria

West Midlands

A new electrified passenger and freight corridor linking the core centres of population and business in Yorkshire and the Midlands with ports in the south of England

East Midlands

A new electrified passenger and freight corridor linking the core centres of population and business in Yorkshire and the Midlands with ports in the south of England

East of England

The government has decided in principle to devolve part of the West Anglia rail franchise to the Mayor of London, aiming for the transfer to take place by the end of 2015

South-West of England

Electrification of Great Western Mainline

Capacity upgrade to Bristol Temple Meads station

New Heathrow link from the Great Western Mainline

London and the South-East

East-West rail project from Oxford to Bedford, via Milton Keynes and Aylesbury

Crossrail to start operating by 2018

Completing Thameslink to provide 24 services every hour in each direction through central London with new, longer and faster trains, with major station redevelopments at Kings Cross, Blackfriars and London Bridge, and a new station at West Hampstead

£115m to electrify the Gospel Oak to Barking rail line and will explore the case for extending the line to Barking Riverside "to unlock potential housing development"

£2m to fund a feasibility study into Crossrail 2


New InterCity Express rolling stock

East and West Coast Mainline capacity upgrades


Great Western Mainline Electrification extended from Cardiff to Swansea

Welsh Valleys electrification

New InterCity Express rolling stock


A £3.3bn programme to support the private sector building of up to 165,000 new affordable homes in England between 2015-16 and 2017-18.

This is in addition to the Help to Buy scheme announced in the Budget.


More than £18bn of investment in schools by 2014-15, including funding for over 400,000 school places to keep pace with rising population.

A further £21bn over the next Parliament, from 2015, to build new schools in England, including up to 180 new free schools, 20 University Technical Colleges and 20 studio schools a year.

The government has also pledged to rebuild 150 schools in very poor condition by 2017. This will provide 275,000 new primary school places and 245,000 new secondary school places to keep pace with population growth.


£4.7bn allocated for capital spending on health and social care in 2015-16, including:

  • £1.4bn investment in hospital upgrades and redevelopments, supporting projects such as the redevelopment of Royal Liverpool hospital
  • Funding for two cutting edge Proton Beam Therapy centres, in London and Manchester
  • £220m funding for home adaptations through the Disabled Facilities Grant and an additional £115m for supported housing to help older and disabled people can live in their own homes for longer
  • £40m for tailored hostel accommodation for rough sleepers to help reduce Accident and Emergency admissions and improve mental health outcomes.


£250m million to build a new prison in North Wales.


Investing up to £250m, locally match-funded, to extend superfast broadband provision from current coverage plans "so that 95% of UK premises will have access to superfast broadband by 2017".


Enabling up to £110bn of private sector energy investment, including possible tax incentives, to boost private sector shale gas production, or "fracking" in the Bowland Basin region, which stretches from Cheshire to Yorkshire

£800m on boosting the Green Investment Bank and £75m for innovative renewable energy projects

Underwriting investment in new nuclear power plant Hinkley Point C, in Somerset.

Underwriting investment to convert the UK's biggest coal-fired power station at Drax, in East Yorkshire, to burn biomass.

Science and Innovation

The government says it will increase capital funding for science from £0.6bn in 2012-13 to £1.1bn in 2015-16, in real terms and in line with inflation to 2016-17, with a further commitment to keep funding growing in line with inflation to 2020-21.

Among the projects in line for cash are:

  • A new national network of Big Data institutes
  • Research into new polar satellite systems
  • Robotics
  • Synthetic biology
  • Regenerative medicine
  • Agricultural technology including a "centre of excellence" for GM crop research
  • Advance materials
  • Accelerating the development of national scale electricity storage
  • The development of the Synergistic Air Breathing Rocket Engine (SABRE)
  • A new high performance computer for the Met Office
  • £150m of capital investment in 2015-16 to fund health research infrastructure in the areas of dementia, genomics and imaging.


the government will work with English Heritage to consult on establishing a charity to care for the historic properties in the National Heritage Collection on a self-financing basis, supported by Government investment of £80m.

Flood defences

A long term funding settlement for flood defences in England, rising to £370m in 2015-16 and then protected in real terms to 2020-21.


The Government will provide £20m of funding to improve air links to London where there is a risk that regional connectivity may be lost.

Government IT projects

More than £200m to expand Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs' digital services over the next three years

£160m between 2013-14 and 2015-16 to introduce digital case management systems across the criminal justice system "to create courtrooms where all parties can work from wi-fi enabled tablets", with the aim of reducing delays, mistakes and duplication in the existing paper-based system

£260m between 2013-14 and 2014-15 to bring in digital systems for NHS patient records and prescriptions to more hospitals

Regional development

£2bn to help set up Local Enterprise Partnerships, in line with Lord Heseltine's recommendations on boosting growth outside London and the South-East, with a further £5bn, from 2016-17 to 2020-21, to support planning of "priority infrastructure". There will also be more funds for Enterprise Zones.