Satisfaction with the state of Sheffield's streets has doubled since a £2 billion roadworks contract was signed, a survey has suggested - despite the deal being hit by controversy over tree-felling.
The city has made the biggest overall improvement out of 112 local authorities that took part in the annual National Highways & Transport Public Satisfaction Survey.
The poll indicated that twice as many people were happy with the condition of Sheffield's roads than in 2010, two years before the Streets Ahead agreement was signed by the council with contractor Amey. Roads, pavements, street lights and bridges are covered by the deal, as well as the maintenance of street trees that has attracted fierce protest.
Sheffield's score for the condition of its highways was 12 per cent higher than the UK national average, while satisfaction levels for street lighting were the second-highest recorded of all the councils that took part.
Coun Bryan Lodge, the council's cabinet member for environment, said the results were 'fantastic', and that the installation of 64,000 modern LED lighting columns had made roads 'much safer'.
“It’s great to see that people in Sheffield are acknowledging the progress we have made in bringing our highway network up to standard through the contract and we hope that, as more works are completed, satisfaction levels will continue to rise," he said.
The deal with Amey is nearing the end of its first five years, known as the 'core investment period' where much of the planned work has taken place.
Robert Allen, the firm's business director for Streets Ahead, said staff had 'turned out in all weathers' since 2012 to complete jobs.
“The fact that people in Sheffield seem to be happier with their local roads than they have been for a decade is down to their dedication,” he said.
To date, the team has resurfaced more than 1,450 miles of pavement, replaced 3,208 drainage gullies, resurfaced over 690 miles of road, repaired more than 145,700 potholes and made improvements to over 1,000 bridges and structures.
Amey has been invited to attend an NHT conference this month to talk about their work in Sheffield. A council representative has also been asked to collect an award.