THE M62 between Brighouse and Leeds is set to become one of Britain's most high-tech motorways.
The Government yesterday revealed plans to widen it to four lanes in both directions between Junction 25 at Clifton and Junction 28, the turn-off for the White Rose Shopping Centre, near Leeds.
It is unlikely the work will start until 2010 and will take more than two years.
But it is just part of revolutionary plans to cut congestion on the 13-mile stretch.
When the extra lane is put in there will be CCTV cameras on overhead gantries every 500 metres, possibly a high car occupancy lane between Chain Bar and Birstall - which can only be used by vehicles with more than one person in - and traffic lights at every junction to control the number of vehicles going on to the motorway.
The plan is for the four lanes to be squeezed into the space the motorway now takes up, pinching a bit from the central reservation, the hard shoulder and building a hard surface over the grass verge.
The hard shoulder will be narrower and become an emergency access route, with refuges cut into the verge for broken-down vehicles.
Special sensors and CCTV systems would alert traffic controllers immediately to any vehicles which have stopped there and help will be sent.
A new Highways Agency control room in Wakefield will monitor all the motorways in north-east England.
Traffic officers are being recruited to deal with minor accidents and keep traffic flowing.
The police will have a reduced role, dealing only with law enforcement and serious accidents.
The details were revealed by John Bagley, the Highways Agency's divisional director.
He said: "Some 135,000 vehicles use this stretch of the M62 every day. And that figure has been known to go as high as 160,000.
"With up to a quarter of these being lorries it is one of the busiest sections of motorway in the country.
"Yet there are, on average, only 1.1 people in each vehicle. This is clearly part of the reason for the congestion.
"That's why we are thinking of trying a high-occupancy lane as a pilot scheme, to persuade more people to car-share."
He added: "The fourth lane will ease traffic flow, reduce congestion and make journey times more reliable."
Mr Bagley admitted that the work would cause disruption. But he added: "We will keep it to a minimum."
The scheme is part of a larger one which will also see the M1 turned into four lanes for a 37-mile stretch from Chesterfield to Leeds.
The entire cost for the M1 and M62 will be £1.29bn.
The work is due to start in South Yorkshire in early 2007 and the M1 work is scheduled to take six years.
David Berry, policy and research officer with the Huddersfield-based Mid Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce, welcomed the move, which business leaders have long campaigned for.
"It is excellent news for our members. Huddersfield is the largest town in the country and that is reflected in its economic activity.
"The motorway between Huddersfield and Leeds is heavily congested, with often massive delays. This has a knock-on effect to industry and business in terms of cost."