Press release

Boost for Essex economy as Chelmer Viaduct starts construction

A major improvement road scheme to increase the capacity along the Chelmer Viaduct and boost the economy started construction in earnest today on the A138 in Essex.

This £28 million investment will involve the construction of the new viaduct and the demolition of the existing viaduct, building three lanes of carriageway, a shared footway and cycleway and a new footpath.

Once completed in winter 2016, this Highways Agency project will reduce congestion and make the route safer. Highways Agency East Regional Director, Catherine Brookes, said:

Building a new viaduct and demolishing the old one demonstrates our commitment to improving our road network and helping to stimulate growth.

Extra capacity along the viaduct will deliver significant economic benefits for both local businesses and motorists while helping to improve road safety.

The existing Chelmer Viaduct is in a poor condition, although we’re content it remains safe for use at the moment.

We have worked hard with our contractor to plan the work carefully to minimise disruption and are engaging with those affected to ensure they’re aware of the work.

Alan Bill, Managing Director of GRAHAM Construction, said:

GRAHAM are delighted to be working with the Highways Agency to safeguard the A138 as a strategic highway link.

Throughout the duration of this project we, as we do on all of our contracts, will work with the local supply chain and use subcontractors and suppliers from across the region as well as engaging with the local community to ensure there is minimal disruption during the course of this project.

The advanced works were completed on 26 January and now the main works will begin. This will involve building foundation works for the bridge in both directions, a temporary bridge and haul road near the Old Navy roundabout will be constructed for the works materials and construction traffic to be transported and cable, sewage and water works will start.

The majority of the work will be carried out offline. More details will be announced as and when required.

To find out more about the A138 Chelmer Viaduct major improvement scheme, people can visit a public information exhibition starting today. The exhibition will be held at Conference Room, Moulsham Mill, Parkway, Chelmsford, CM2 7PX, on Tuesday 17 March from 4pm to 8pm.

People can register for updates on the scheme’s webpage or call the Highways Agency Information Line on 0300 123 5000.

General enquiries

Members of the public should contact the Highways Agency Information Line on 0300 123 5000.

Media enquiries

Journalists should contact the Highways Agency press office on 0844 693 1448 and use the menu to speak to the most appropriate press officer.