Highways England will spend £150 million on harnessing new technology, including trials of driverless car technology on motorways.
Highways England has published its Innovation strategy which sets out for the first time its wide-ranging plan to ensure it is keeping pace with advances in technology, bringing benefits to road users up and down the country as well as unlocking economic growth.
A connected corridor or ‘wi-fi road’ could see cars and infrastructure wirelessly connected, with drivers receiving news of advanced road closures or congestion warnings. The strategy also includes trialling radar technology on motorways and in tunnels to improve the way breakdowns are detected.
The strategy builds on the announcement by Chancellor George Osborne in the March 2016 Budget that driverless cars will be tested on motorways by the end of 2017.
Roads Minister Andrew Jones said:
“Innovation is absolutely critical to our £15 billion investment plan for roads. A more reliable road network is good news for motorists and good news for the economy. Quicker, safer roads will improve access to jobs and opportunities. Placing Britain at the forefront of innovation and research in this area will also create more jobs and investment.”