Roundabout work due to start soon
PLANS for major improvements to Wraxall Road roundabout on the Avon Ring Road have been given the green light by residents.
Kingswood MP Chris Skidmore has added his backing to the 60 percent of local people who voiced support for the £6.9 million ‘through-about’ scheme, which has now received full approval by Mayor Tim Bowles from the West of England Combined Authority (WECA).
The roundabout, which is near the end of Tower Lane in the south-east of Kingswood and north-west of Cadbury Heath, is the last ring road roundabout in South Gloucestershire to receive major investment.
It currently experiences traffic queues during the busiest hours on weekdays, and queuing not only causes delays to traffic on the A4174 but also to vehicles entering the roundabout using Tower Lane and Wraxall Road. Bus services are also affected, and these delays are expected to increase as traffic levels grow.
WECA had previously awarded £1.7 million to develop the scheme and it has now agreed the final £5.2 million, with South Gloucestershire Council funding the £97,000 increase in costs that have occurred since the design stage.
As part of the plans, extra lanes and traffic lights will be added to the roundabout to improve capacity at pinch-points. WECA says this is essential for the West of England’s infrastructure to meet future housing and economic growth.
A report to committee members stated that: “The project will involve the modification of the existing uncontrolled roundabout layout to a fully signal-controlled arrangement to address the significant levels of congestion at this junction, especially during evening peak times, which is forecast to become more severe in the future.
“Specifically, it comprises the following elements:
• Widening of the A4174 approaches to three lanes with four lanes at entry.
• Provision of three-lane through-traffic across the middle of the roundabout.
• A merge-on exit arrangement for A4174 through-traffic from three lanes to two over a distance of some 100m.
• Traffic signals at each entry
and conflict point to manage the flow of traffic safely and efficiently.”
Chris Skidmore said: “From knocking on doors locally it is clear that this junction causes immense frustration to those who use it as there are nearly always queues and it often feels that you take your life into your hands when using it. I am delighted therefore that in the last few weeks we have seen confirmation of both the level of local support for this project and the WECA funding needed to get on and build it, which will provide a big boost for our local economy.
“I will keep on campaigning for transport investment locally to keep our area moving and secure local jobs.”
South Gloucestershire cabinet member for transport Councillor Steve Reade said: “This investment into the Wraxall Road redevelopment – an important junction for local motorists, residents, businesses and communities as a whole – demonstrates the value of our membership to the Combined Authority and I am grateful to WECA for this invaluable support."
Councillors Sam Bromiley and Elizabeth Bromiley, who represent the Parkwall and Warmley Ward, and have been active in campaigning for improvements to the junction, said: “We are pleased that the council are now able to make improvements to the Wraxall Road roundabout with this funding.
"It has been a pinch point in our road network for far too long and needs significant work for some time. This will make it more suitable for the amount of vehicles that use it on a regular basis and will have a massive impact to motorists and residents in our area.”
Construction work on the junction is expected to start on Saturday August 1 2020 and is due for completion 12 months later.