Milestone reached in scheme to widen congested A500
A major scheme to widen a heavily-congested section of the A500 in Staffordshire has reached a key milestone.
The first phase of the £17.5 million A500 Etruria widening in Stoke-on Trent, which will increase the number of lanes from two to three in both directions, is now complete.
To date over 1,100m of safety barrier has been installed, 35,000 tonnes of aggregate used and over 600 metal sheet piles installed on the northbound verge to build a retaining wall in the ground supporting the embankment.
Work is set to begin in February on phase two of the upgrade, to widen the stretch between Porthill (A5271) and Wolstanton (A527).
This phase will take place in the central reservation and will include replacing the existing safety barrier with a new concrete one.
Concrete barriers are safer for motorists as they help prevent ‘cross-over’ accidents – when vehicles go onto the opposite carriageway – and also, therefore, mean fewer lane closures for repairs.
To enable these works to be carried out safely they will take place overnight, on week nights, for up to four months.
The work will run between 8pm and 5am Monday to Friday, beginning on Monday 17 February. Two lanes will be kept open in each direction during the day.
The current traffic management system through the roadworks will need to switch to the central reservation for the phase two works which will require two weekend closures:
- 10pm Friday 7 February until 5am Monday 10 February, the northbound carriageway will be closed.
- 10pm Friday 14 February until 5am Monday 17 February, the southbound carriageway will be closed and one lane of the northbound open.
Clearly signed diversions will be in place while the A500 is closed.
Highways England Project Manager Humzah Mir said:
“This scheme will make journeys smoother and safer for people using this major route and we are delighted to have successfully completed the first phase.
“As we move into the second phase, and the night-time working, we will keep any noise and disturbance to a minimum for motorists and local residents and will work hard to complete the work as quickly as possible.
“We are grateful to road users and the local community for their patience and understanding while this important work is carried out.”
This scheme is expected to be completed by autumn 2020 and will improve safety, reduce delays and queuing and improve journey time reliability. It will also support Stoke City Council’s Etruria Valley Development.
For further information about the scheme, please visit: https://highwaysengland.co.uk/a500-etruria-widening/