Mid Worcestershire MP Nigel Huddleston has welcomed the commencement of the final phase of the scheme to fully dual the A4440 Southern Link Road. This follows an announcement earlier this month that the Government had approved almost £55 million of funding for the project from the Large Local Majors Fund.
The dual carriageway will connect the M5 to the west of Worcestershire and Herefordshire, providing urgently needed congestion relief for the businesses and residents that rely on the road. It will also reduce journey times for commuters and improve access to key sites such as the M5, Birmingham International Airport and Worcestershire Parkway Station. The Government estimates that the project will support the creation of more than 6,000 jobs and improve economic growth across the region.
The final phase of work will include the construction of a new 1.9km road to the south of the current carriageway and the building of an additional bridge and viaduct next to the current Carrington Bridge and Powick Common Viaduct. The scheme also includes construction of a new cycle/footbridge over Hams Way, to the west of Powick Roundabout, a new, wider cycle and footpath to the North of the current road, the introduction of a new fully lit underpass to enable crossing near the Ketch roundabout and capacity improvements to both the Powick and Ketch roundabouts.
Commenting on the announcement that the final phase of works will begin this month, Mr Huddleston said: “I am delighted that after years of campaigning, a commencement date for the final phase of this project has now been announced and Worcestershire residents will soon benefit from the much needed improvements that the Southern Link Road project will bring. I have been working closely with Worcestershire County Council and my fellow Worcestershire MPs to lobby for further funding for this project since I was first elected and am pleased that the Government has recognised just how vital these works are to the region. Worcestershire County Council has released a video showing an artist’s impression of what the flyover will look like and residents should visit the Council’s website to see it for themselves.”
Councillor Ken Pollock, Cabinet Member for Economy and Infrastructure, said: “It's fantastic news that work can now begin on this final phase to dual the SLR from the M5 to Powick Roundabout. Once complete, journey times will be significantly reduced which will help keep unnecessary through traffic out of the city centre.The dualling will also support economic growth by improving access to and from the M5 and also to the Worcestershire Parkway station which is due to open later this year.”
Major Project Director for Alun Griffiths Limited, Richard Bruten, said: “As Worcestershire County Council's contractor, we are very excited to be working on this, the final phase of the critically important Southern Link Road scheme. We'd like to assure those that use this stretch of the Southern Link Road that we will be doing what we can to ensure the impact on current journey times is kept to a minimum.”