HC Deb 01 August 1962 vol 664 cc86-7W
60. Mr. Dance

asked the Minister of Transport what additional service area he intends to provide on the existing part of M1.

Mr. Marples

As I announced in the House on 22nd November last year, tenders were invited for the development of catering and other facilities at the Toddington site 4 miles north of the A.505 junction in Bedfordshire. A developer has now been appointed and I hope that this new service area will be opened as early as possible in 1963.

64. Sir B. Janner

asked the Minister of Transport whether he will make a statement on the provision of rose-bush divisions on motorways in general, and on the M.1 Motorway in particular.

Mr. Marples

The need for central barriers on motorways is under constant review. We expect to start some experimental work in the near future. The present width of central reserves would not permit the effective use for this purpose of rosa multiflora japonica, which I assume the hon. Member has in mind.

Dr. Bennett

asked the Minister of Transport what are the faults which have led to the numerous repair works on the Ml, with their consequential endangering of traffic; what is tine cost of the repair works up to the present time; and what proportion of the cost has been incurred by the rigid reinforced concrete, and the other types of construction, respectively.

Mr. Charles A. Howell

asked the Minister of Transport what guarantees were given by the contractors who built the Ml motorway regarding the surface durability; what has been the cost of repairs to date; what is the anticipated cost of repairs in progress and those repairs scheduled; and who is meeting these costs.

Mr. Marples

Damage to the flexible carriageways on Ml has been caused by water affecting the lower layer of asphalt and softening the top of the lean concrete base. The defects are almost wholly confined to the slow lanes where the stresses created by fast moving heavy commercial traffic proved to be much more severe than anything of which we had previous experience.

Excluding normal maintenance, about £59,000 has been spent by my Department to date on the repair of this damage and a further £250,000 is likely to be necessary. No expenditure other than normal maintenance has been called for on the concrete carriageways.

I am not aware that the repair works are a source of danger to traffic using the motorway.

The responsibility of the contractors for the motorway was to build it according to the specification called for at the time of construction and to maintain it for 12 months.

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