The inquiry into the Mersey Gateway bridge, which is designed to relieve congestion on the existing Silver Jubilee Bridge, is due to take place in Halton BC early next year.
It will span the Mersey between the towns of Runcorn and Widnes and is designed to kickstart the surrounding area’s regeneration by cutting local journey times.
Halton BC submitted its plans for the new bridge, which will be able to viewed from as far away as the Pennines, to the government earlier this year.
The 1,000 metre long cable bridge will carry six lanes of traffic with a lower deck designed to accommodate a possible future light rail system.
Cllr Tony McDermott, leader of Halton BC and chair of the Mersey Gateway Executive Board welcomed the inquiry
He said: “We have said all along that a public inquiry is important and would be needed for the Mersey Gateway as this is such an important and complex issue.”
David Parr, Chief Executive of Halton Borough Council, said: “We have a unique opportunity here to unblock this congestion bottleneck which is restricting our region from reaching its full potential.
"It is vital that we deliver our vision for the Mersey Gateway that will see new jobs, investment and the continued transformation of Halton and the region.