The Government has announced it is to upgrade the notorious stretch of the M56 near Runcorn into a smart motorway.
In a blueprint for its 'Northern Powerhouse' strategy published today (Tuesday, August 11), the Department Of Transport (DfT) said the work on the M56 will include the installation of an extra junction in Runcorn between junction 11 at Preston Brook and junction 12 at Clifton.
The news came the day after a tanker fire brought chaos to the M56 at Helsby and surrounding roads and transport systems - the latest in a long line of incidents which also included a crash which claimed two lives last October.
The DfT said the smart motorway proposals will also boost access for 3MG freight park in Widnes and help the southern access to Manchester.
The work is part of £13bn worth of investment announced today in transport infrastructure.
Upgrading a motorway to 'smart' status includes installing variable speed limits, 'red X' lane closures to manage traffic and occasional use of the hard shoulder to alleviate congestion.
In its blueprint the DfT said: "Work to create a new junction halfway between J11 and J12 on the M56 will mean easier access to Daresbury, the 3MG freight distribution park and the science and technology park, helping businesses get their products distributed quicker.
"These improvements will also improve access from North Wales, Cheshire and Merseyside to Manchester Airport."
Patrick McLoughlin, transport secretary, said: "This one nation Government is determined to close the economic gap between north and south.
"Investing in transport - something that successive governments have failed to do sufficiently - is vital to making that happen."
There have been more incidents on the M56 near Runcorn today with a car fire and an overturned HGV once again causing disruption to traffic.