The Mersey Gateway Project

Weston Link closure

September 11, 2014MerseylinkNews

Motorists driving through Runcorn are being advised a busy road will be partly closed for 10 days while important investigations take place.

The northbound carriageway of Weston Link will be closed, from the Weston Point Expressway slip road, and will affect the entry onto both the A533 northbound Central Expressway, and A533 eastbound Southern Expressway.

These routes will be closed from Saturday 20 September until Tuesday 30 September, while United Utilities engineers undertake some additional road investigation work in this area following a request from National Grid.

The southbound carriageway, heading towards the A557 Weston Point Expressway, will remain open.

Advance Notification Boards are already in place warning drivers about the temporary changes and a clearly marked diversion will be installed ahead of work starting.

The carriageway needs to be closed to ensure the safety of workers. It will take 10 days because they need to dig three metres under the highway surface to investigate and then reinstate the surface.

Bill Slater, United Utilities project coordinator, said: “We will need to make some changes to our water network to allow the Mersey Gateway road network improvements to be completed in this area, so it’s important we are fully prepared for when the work needs to take place.

”We’re sorry for any disruption to people’s journeys, but please bear with us while we carry out this important work.”

Hugh O’Connor, General Manager of Merseylink, said: “The safety of workers and road users is our number one priority, and a full closure of this carriageway is essential on this occasion.”

The Mersey Gateway Project is a major scheme to build a new six-lane toll bridge over the Mersey between Runcorn and Widnes. It also includes upgrading over 9km of road network around the Ditton roundabout in Widnes, the Bridgewater Interchange in Runcorn and down to junction 12 of the M56 roundabout.

The economic, transport and social benefits the project will bring to the region include:

  • 470 permanent full-time equivalent jobs on site during construction
  • 4,640 permanent direct and indirect jobs
  • £61.9 million a year in Gross Value Added from the new jobs by 2030.

When it opens in 2017, both the new bridge and the Silver Jubilee Bridge will be tolled, but they will be free* to all residents.

*Residents of Halton will still need to register to use the bridges and there will be a small charge for this.

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