Seven miles of the A453 will be widened between M1 Junction 24 and the A52 Nottingham ring road.
The project is the first of six growth schemes announced in the government’s 2011 autumn statement. Completion date is summer 2015.
Roads minister Stephen Hammond said: “The start of construction in January shows our commitment to deliver much needed improvements to England’s infrastructure - helping to unlock growth potential, while cutting congestion. I know the A453 improvements will be a welcome economic boost for road users and businesses in the East Midlands.”
White Young Green is the Highways Agency’s consulting engineer for the project.