Number of roads in need of repair in Sheffield falls but still remain above average

Sheffield has a higher than average number of roads in need of repair.
Sheffield has a higher than average number of roads in need of repair.
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The number of Sheffield roads in need of repair has fallen since a £2.2 billion highway improvement and maintenance deal was signed - but the figure remains higher than the national average.

Eight years worth of figures showed that the number of roads deemed to be in poor condition had dropped from 35 per cent in 2013/14 - a year after Amey took over the maintenance of the city's highways to just 13 per cent in 2016/17.

13 per cent of Sheffield's roads were classed as 'in need of repair' in 2016/17.

13 per cent of Sheffield's roads were classed as 'in need of repair' in 2016/17.

Sheffield Council signed the 25-year Streets Ahead deal with Amey in 2012 and the contractor said it had so far resurfaced around 65 per cent of the city's roads as part of the contract.

The figures, compiled by the BBC, showed the national average for each local authority to be nine per cent - four per cent lower than the amount needing attention in Sheffield.

Nick Hetherington, network account manager for Streets Ahead, said: “Prior to Streets Ahead, Sheffield’s road network was in severe decline due to many years of under-investment. The first five years of the Streets Ahead contract has seen a huge drive to radically upgrade the city’s infrastructure.

“The good news is that the data shows a steady fall in the percentage of Sheffield’s roads that require maintenance and suggests that, thanks to the Streets Ahead investment, they are being improved at a faster than average rate.

“In fact, we believe the picture today is even better. The data only covers a period up to March 2017 at which time Streets Ahead had completed improvements to only around 54 per cent of Sheffield’s road network. Another year on and Streets Ahead has now completed about 65 per cent.

“There is clearly still a lot to do but the progress is good and the city is moving in the right direction. A good road network is important for the local economy and the Streets Ahead programme will continue to improve and maintain roads to a good standard for the next 20 years.”

As part of the contract, the city's streets will be maintained to their new standard by Amey through until the end of the contract in 2037.

The figures come after The Star launched a Pothole Watch campaign, encouraging readers to report potholes to both the council and us, in an attempt to get Sheffield's roads up to scratch.

Amey said it received 667 reports of potholes between February 15 and March and 1,000 in the month prior to that - with wintry weather blamed for the rise in reports.

But Lynsey Connelly, Amey's highways operations manager, urged people to continue reporting them.

She said: "In recent weeks, we’ve experienced an unprecedented amount of wintry weather episodes, including the prevalence of snow and ice, which has impacted on the city’s roads.

"Following snow, freezing rain or icy conditions, potholes are more likely to appear on the road surfaces and we are working around the clock to ensure we respond to requests for pothole requests in a timely manner.

“We would encourage people to go to Sheffield City Council’s website to report a pothole where they can drop a pin on a map on the exact spot where the pothole has appeared.”

To report a pothole complete a report on the council's website at www.sheffield.gov.uk/streetsahead or call them on 0114 273 4567 and we’ll keep a close eye on whether the reported potholes have been repaired.

Send your reports to news@thestar.co.uk and include a few details of where it is as well as a contact telephone number.