Disappointment at roads opposition

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From: Coun Colin Ross

Liberal Democrat group deputy leader, Dore and Totley councillor

I was disappointed to read the letter from Sheffield Conservatives (Doubts over PFI roads contract, Nov 10), in which they criticised the plan to repair Sheffield’s crumbling roads and pavements.

The letter seems confused, as it gives the impression the project is only funded by the council. In fact it will see £1.21 billion of Coalition Government money come into Sheffield to fix roads, pavements and streetlights.

As someone who fought hard to secure this project for Sheffield and was part of the administration that worked on bringing it forward, I believe that it is vital we take this once in a generation opportunity to rid ourselves of the ‘pothole city’ tag.

This is why Liberal Democrats, whilst running the council, got the project through the comprehensive spending review without seeing major reductions.

So it’s disappointing to read the Sheffield Conservatives attacking the plan, just as we come towards the scheduled start of work next spring.

Whilst PFI schemes might not be the perfect solution, it is the ‘only game in town’. We would be foolish to pass up this £1.21 billion of investment.

From talking to my constituents on the doorsteps of Dore and Totley, fixing our roads and pavements comes out as a top priority for them.

It’s a shame that the local Conservatives don’t seem to agree.