A £4.1 million scheme to tackle congestion at the M6 junction with the A580 East Lancs Road near St Helens is on schedule to be completed by Easter.
Work on the Highways Agency project began last month and involves adding four extra lanes to the section of the A580 that takes traffic through the centre of the roundabout at junction 23.
The improvements will mean vehicles will be able to turn right onto the M6 and A49 Lodge Lane without having to travel around the roundabout, and should significantly increase the capacity of the junction.
A dedicated left-turn lane will also be created for the A49 from the roundabout, the exit slip road from the northbound M6 will be extended, and the entire junction with be resurfaced with an antiskid coating. A new traffic light system will also be installed, using sensors to monitor traffic levels and adjust the lights accordingly.
Andrew Kimmance, Project Manager at the Highways Agency, said:
This is a major project that will benefit the thousands of people who use junction 23 everyday to travel between the M6, A580 and A49.
The extra lanes, better slip roads and new traffic lights will make it much easier and quicker for people to travel through the junction, benefitting both the local and regional economy as well as improving safety.
There will obviously be some disruption while this work takes place but we’re on schedule to have the project completed by Easter. The end result will definitely be worth the wait.
Some overnight closures of the junction will be required while the work is carried out, and a temporary 50mph speed limit is currently in place on the slip roads. The closures will be publicised in advance on roadside signs, and will be in place between 9pm and 5am during weekdays, and until 7am at weekends. Some lane closures will also be needed at all times of day.
The £4.1 million project is part of the Government’s £317 million pinch point programme to help stimulate new development and local economic growth by improving road safety and tackling congestion bottlenecks.
A total of 28 projects, worth £66 million, are being carried out across the North West as part of the programme, which was devised with the input of councils and Local Enterprise Partnerships.
More details on the scheme are available on the projects pages.
Members of the public should contact the Highways Agency Information Line on 0300 123 5000.
Journalists should contact the Highways Agency press office on 0844 693 1448 and use the menu to speak to the most appropriate press officer.