DRIVERS are being warned about delays on the M5 as an £11million scheme to improve traffic flow on the motorway gets underway today (Friday).
The works on Junction 4 at Lydiate Ash are aimed at widening the island and improving both exit slip roads and, while the maintenance is taking place, there will be changes to the road layout and temporary speed limits will be implemented.
The M5 will be reduced to three narrow lanes where it approaches Junction 4 and two lanes through the junction and two existing bridges across the M5 will need to be widened. There will also be speed limits of 50mph and 40mph at some points to ensure the safety of road workers and all road users.
The roundabout will remain fully open to traffic between 6am and 7.30pm each day for most of the work, but there will be an 11-week period when it will be reduced to two lanes.
Some night closures of the M5 through the junction will be required and there will also be a closure of up to 48 hours needed through the junction to allow bridge beams to be lifted into place. Overnight closure of the roundabout will also be required to install safety barriers. The extensive works will take until spring next year to complete.
Highways Agency project manager Debbie Makinde said drivers should be prepared to reduce their speed around the junction and take extra care as the road layout may change as work progresses:
“When complete this work will really improve this busy junction, with traffic flowing better, reduced queuing back onto the motorway and increased capacity on the exit slip roads.
“The new spiral road markings on the roundabout will also virtually remove the need for drivers to make lane changing manoeuvres once on the roundabout.”
She said the works would inevitably cause dome disruption and asked drivers to be patient as it would really improve journeys in the long-term.
Visit http://www.highways.gov.uk/roads/road-projects/m5-junction-4-improvements/ or call the Highways Agency Information Line on 0300 123 5000 for more information.