A £10.7m scheme to tackle congestion and improve road links between the county and the city has finished on schedule, despite the COVID-19 restrictions.
The county council led on the delivery of the improvements on behalf of the city council, which has seen a range of measures introduced on the A5630 Anstey Lane and A46 roundabout, in north west Leicester, to increase capacity and improve journey times.
The scheme involved:
- Turning the single-lane section of road between the A46 interchange and Bennion Road roundabout into a dual carriageway;
- Creating additional lanes at the approach to the roundabouts at both junctions and installing new traffic lights;
- Improving pedestrian and cycling routes along the busy stretch of road.
The improvements are designed to help accommodate the extra traffic that will be generated by the 3,000-home Ashton Green development by Leicester City Council. It will also support growth anticipated from future housing developments in the north of Leicester and in the county.
Councillor Trevor Pendleton, cabinet member for highways and transport, said: “I’m delighted that the work to improve this very busy route is complete. This is a major investment and should ease congestion and help to reduce delays for people in the county. It will also aim to improve air quality by encouraging more people to walk and cycle.
“This is another great example of delivering infrastructure to support residents and businesses.”
The scheme was funded by the city council – as developers of Ashton Green – and Highways England, as well as through part of the £16.2m allocation from the Local Growth Fund, a pot of government funding awarded to the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership (LLEP) for projects which benefit the local area and economy.
Highways England contributed to the cost of the work through its Growth and Housing Fund, targeted at helping local communities unlock plans for future housing and to create better journey times and generate jobs.
City Mayor, Peter Soulsby, said: “This important scheme has improved a very busy junction for motorists, providing extra capacity which will ease delays.
“The investment from Highways England and the LLEP has played a major part in providing vital infrastructure needed to support the growing demands for housing in this part of the city.
“The efficient delivery of this complex scheme is a major credit to the contractors and the close partnership between the city and county councils. It will provide long-term benefits to residents and commuters.”
Kevin Harris, chair of the LLEP board of directors, said: “I’m delighted that this important piece of infrastructure improvement work has been completed on schedule. Improving access to the Ashton Green development – to which the LLEP provided £16.2m from our Local Growth Fund – will bring huge benefits to both residents and businesses. I’m looking forward to seeing plans for further housing developments in the area, which will be vital as our economy and population continue to grow in the new decade.”
The work was carried out by Galliford Try, one of the UK’s leading construction groups, under contract to the county council.
The firm adapted its operational procedures to accommodate the safe working practices as per government guidelines and successfully managed to continue delivering the scheme during the pandemic.
It also carried out local community work, which included helping a local charity with food donations and supporting a school with its outdoor playing area renovation and a flooding issue.
Jamie Missenden, midlands regional manager for Galliford Try, said: “We are delighted to have completed the scheme on time and within the agreed budget. The success of the project has been born out of collaboration between all parties – the client, the key supply chain partners and local stakeholders. We have been delivering excellence throughout thanks to the determination, dedication and cooperation of the entire team and the patience and understanding of those local to the scheme.”
The A5630 Anstey Lane improvement scheme complements the major improvement schemes already completed on the A50 and A6 as part of the North West Major Transport Project.
This scheme helps ensure that roads and major junctions on key routes in the north west of Leicester will have the capacity for predicted housing growth over the coming decades.
The council is aware of utility companies that will be carrying out statutory work in the area over the next couple of months, separate to the scheme, and will be facilitating the work.
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