Plans for a new toll road to help reduce congestion on the M4 in south Wales have been reported. It is believed that Chancellor George Osborne will announce plans to back the new toll road in June’s comprehensive spending review. While wider road upgrades across the country are also being considered, the possibility that drivers could be forced to pay a toll on the relief road would mean paying to both enter and exit Wales has made some motorists unhappy.
Relief roads around the Newport area of the M4 had already been considered by the Welsh Assembly Government back in 2009, but were dropped when costs rose to £1 billion. The WAG have described the idea as unworkable and rejected current plans to place a toll on any new Welsh road in an effort to recoup the cost of building. However, while the Government have apparently offered to back the new relief road, it would be the responsibility of the WAG to find the revenue to support that borrowing through alternative means, all of which are as politically sensitive. The WAG continues to research alternative options for improving the M4’s problem area.