The decision follows the work of SELEP, which covers Essex, East Sussex, Kent, Medway, Southend and Thurrock, and partners, in putting the case for the investment as part of its efforts to drive forward the area’s economy in particular supporting the development of the Enterprise Zone in Harlow, which will benefit significantly from this investment.
The new Junction 7a will be constructed to the north of Harlow and will help reduce journey times between the town and Stansted and Cambridge, and also ensure that a new garden town can go ahead.
Christian Brodie, SELEP Chairman, said: “As well as improving the area’s connectivity, the new junction will be instrumental in the delivery of up to 15,000 new homes and strengthen the local economy.”
The new junction was approved last month by Essex County Council Cabinet and followed a public consultation process.
Kevin Bentley, deputy leader and cabinet member for economic growth, regeneration and partnerships at Essex County Council, and board member of SELEP, said: “I am delighted that the Government has backed this vital junction which offers a much-needed link for residents and business across west Essex.
“Creating a key link to the M11 for Harlow, reductions in congestion and business growth opportunities are just a handful of reasons this plan has received unrivalled support.
“It is important that we now move quickly so drivers and businesses across Essex can feel the positive effect of this work as soon as possible.”
This latest funding success is on top of £488 million of Growth Deals monies already awarded to the SELEP.