Highways England is launching a second consultation today, Tuesday January 16, on plans to upgrade the A358 between the M5 at Taunton and Southfields Roundabout on the A303 in Somerset.
The Government, as part of its £15 billion Road Investment Strategy, is committed to upgrading all remaining sections of the strategic A303/A358 corridor between the M3 and M5 to dual carriageway standard.
The plan for the A358 upgrade is to create a complete section of high quality dual carriageway, reducing congestion and leading to quicker journeys for motorists. The other two projects on this corridor in the Government’s first road investment period are the A303 Stonehenge scheme and the A303 Sparkford to Ilchester dualling scheme.
Responding to feedback from initial consultation last year, Highways England is now holding a new consultation until 27 February.
Highways England, project manager, David Stock said,
The A303/A358 is such a vital route that we need to be absolutely sure we find the best option for upgrading the section between the A303 and M5 at Taunton.
We had a huge response to the previous consultation and after reviewing all the feedback closely we understand how important it is to give people the chance to have their say on more options before taking the scheme to the next stage.
We urge everyone who is interested in the route to tell us what they think of the new proposals so we can be sure we deliver a scheme that will help to deliver growth and prosperity for the whole region.
Three options are being presented for the section between the M5 at Taunton and West Hatch, and more detail for the proposed dualling of the existing A358 between West Hatch and Southfields Roundabout on the A303.
The A358 is currently a mix of single and dual carriageway, carrying more vehicles than it was designed for.
This leads to delays, and the plan is to improve the route to a dual carriageway as well as improve connectivity and access for local communities and vulnerable road users such as cyclists, horse riders and pedestrians.
For further information on the consultation and public events taking place, go to the consultation page.
Members of the public should contact the Highways England customer contact centre on 0300 123 5000.
Journalists should contact the Highways England press office on 0844 693 1448 and use the menu to speak to the most appropriate press officer.