ENGINEERS are preparing to remove around 20,000 tonnes of earth in one of the final, big steps towards completing a major new road junction at Uttoxeter.
Workers will lower an embankment approximately 20 feet to allow the installation of new drains and utilities. They will also complete the outstanding stretch of the new A522 carriageway, footpaths and street lighting to connect it to the new junction and bridge across the A50 near Uttoxeter.
As a result the A522 will be completely closed to all vehicles and pedestrians, just west of Tunnicliffe Way, Uttoxeter, 24-hours-a-day from 5am Monday, July 16 to Friday, September 28.
The new bridge across the A50, three new roundabouts, new slip roads, link roads and the removal of the old bridge are being delivered by Staffordshire County Council, on behalf of Highways England, to support business and unlock land for new housing and economic growth.
Mark Winnington, Staffordshire County Council’s Cabinet member for Jobs and Growth, said: “We have deliberately scheduled this essential phase of the project to coincide with both the summer holiday closure of the JCB Heavy Products factory and the school summer holidays when traffic levels will be lower than usual.”
Traffic travelling west on the A522 towards Tean will be diverted on to the A50 at the B5030 McDonald’s roundabout and then leave the A50 at the new junction, use the new bridge and re-join the A522.
Traffic travelling east on the A522 towards Uttoxeter will be diverted on to the eastbound A50 and at the B5030 roundabout those wanting Uttoxeter town centre will be directed left towards the A518 The Dove Way.
Pedestrians will still be able to travel in both directions by following a short, signposted diversion between Tunnicliffe Way and The Parks restaurant, which passes through Torrance Grove and along a temporarily lit and resurfaced public footpath. Cyclists can also use the route but are asked to dismount on the public footpath.
The slip roads, ‘on’ and ‘off’ the A50, from the A522 New Road roundabout will also be closed at the same time, but access to the Shell petrol station, which stands a few hundred yards west of the B5030 roundabout on the westbound carriageway will be maintained at all times.
Mark Winnington added: “Despite planning to carry out this essential work at a quieter time of the year, there’s no doubt this will cause some inconvenience and I’d like to thank people for their understanding – and ask they allow a little more time for journeys.”
The embankment being removed is on the south side of the A50 and currently raises the A522 up to the ‘old’ bridge across the dual carriageway.
Other work planned for the near future includes overnight closures of the A50 planned for the nights of:
- Friday, July 6, 8pm to 5.30am: the westbound carriageway will be closed and the eastbound open as usual;
- Saturday, July 7, 8pm to 5.30am: the eastbound carriageway will be closed and the westbound open;
- Saturday, July 14, and Sunday July 15, 8pm to 5.30am: closed in both directions.
During the closures of the A50, we will put a fully signposted diversion route in place, suitable for all vehicles including HGVs. Highways England will put advance notices warning of the closures on its wider A-road and motorway network to encourage traffic to take alternative routes on the nights of the closures.