Green Light For M4 Relief Road

16 July 2014, 17:56 | Updated: 30 March 2016, 13:50

The Welsh Government's given the go-ahead for a billion pound motorway to be built around Newport.

It's to try and cut rush hour congestion on the M4.

The Transport Minister says the new relief road will cut journey times and boost the economy.

Edwina Hart said: "Traffic congestion and unreliable journey times, particularly during rush hour, are common occurrences on the M4 around Newport.

"Addressing these capacity and resilience issues is a significant challenge that we face in ensuring that Wales has an effective economic infrastructure which improves our competitiveness and access to jobs and services."

"The Plan is seeking to improve accessibility for people, Welsh goods and services to international markets by addressing capacity and resilience issues on the main gateway into South Wales."

Environmental campaigners and business groups are concerned about the impact it'll have.

The route is expected to go through sites of special scientific interest on the Gwent Levels.

Gareth Chubb from Friends of the Earth Cymru said: "This vastly expensive, utterly unnecessary and terribly damaging motorway is the worst possible transport choice for south east Wales.

"And the billion pound price tag means that, at a time when traffic has actually decreased since 2007, it's going to come at the cost of the sustainable solutions that could benefit us all.

"Investment in public transport and some modest road improvements could improve transport in the area at a fraction of the cost, and we could be seeing the benefits almost immediately.