Stockport Council is currently consulting on the long-term vision for transport in the south Greater Manchester area up until 2040 (the South East Manchester Multi-Modal Strategy).
The draft Strategy has a greater emphasis on sustainable and active travel whilst continuing the multi-modal approach of the original 2001 SEMMM Strategy. The Strategy presents a package of proposed measures, addressing the full range of transport modes and including interventions relating to bus, rail, cycling and walking, tram, and car travel.
The A6 to M60 Relief Road scheme is just one element of the wide-ranging package of schemes proposed through the draft Strategy. Whilst the draft Strategy proposes a package of schemes, it does not give approval for any scheme to go ahead. Following the current public consultation and the final adoption of the strategy by both Stockport and Cheshire East Councils, further work will need to be undertaken to develop the proposals and business cases for individual schemes before any formal decisions can be considered.
In December 2017, on completing the first stage in developing the business case for the A6 to M60 Relief Road, the Council decision was to continue to develop the business case in order that a fully informed and evidenced decision could be made. For this reason, the scheme has been included in the draft SEMMM Strategy, recognising the fact that the Council wishes to undertake further work to develop the business case before making a decision on whether to proceed with delivering the scheme.
At the December meeting of Full Council, it was also agreed that a request be made to government to fund this next stage of business case development work, with the aim of undertaking the work in time for the next phase of large local major scheme bidding which was indicated to be later on this year. DfT have advised us that they have no current plans to fund feasibility work.
We will continue to work closely with DfT and TfGM to explore potential future funding opportunities to develop the proposal and develop the next stage of the business case. If there are no resources identified for feasibility work in the short term we will need to consider funding following the outcome of the SEMMMS refresh.