Members of the public are being invited to learn more about plans to improve a vital route linking the South East and South West of England.
Highways England is hosting 4 public engagement days to provide road users, local communities and businesses with information on how our maintenance and improvement plans along the A303/A358 corridor will be developed.
The events will also provide an opportunity for people who drive on or live near the route to give their initial views on the proposals.
As announced in the government’s Road Investment Strategy, Highways England is committed to delivering a high quality, high performing route between the South West, London and the South East, with the focus on 3 dualling schemes:
- A303 Amesbury to Berwick Down, including improving the setting of the World Heritage Site at Stonehenge
- A303 Sparkford to Ilchester
- A358 Taunton to Southfields
During the events, members of the public will also have the opportunity to learn more about the proposals, and the timescales, and speak to Highways England staff.
Highways England Regional Director Andrew Page-Dove said:
The A303/A358 corridor is an essential link for people living along its route and for thousands of people who use it to travel between the South East and South West of England.
The public engagement days will allow us to introduce ourselves to the local communities, explain what we are planning to do to deliver the commitment in the Road Investment Strategy, and listen to their views.
The events will be held at the following venues between 1pm and 7pm:
- Lady Antrobus House, Amesbury SP4 7HH - Friday, 19 February
- Podymore Inn, Podimore, BA22 8JF – Monday, 22 February
- Monks Yard, Horton Cross, Ilminster, TA19 9PT – Thursday, 25 February
- Creative Innovation Centre CIC, Memorial Hall, Paul Street, Taunton, TA1 3PF - Friday, 26 February
Formal consultation on the 3 schemes, will take place at a later date. Subject to the necessary statutory approvals, construction on the three dualling schemes would begin in 2020.
The Amesbury to Berwick Down dualling scheme aims to improve the setting of Stonehenge, along with the landscape of the surrounding World Heritage Site, while considering the needs for the road user and local residents. It will remove through traffic from the village of Winterbourne Stoke; it will improve journey times for commuters and holidaymakers, improve resilience and safety and will be a key contribution to the development of the new A303 expressway to the South West, as well as contributing to the economic benefits of the wider A303 route from London to the South West.
The planned Sparkford to Illchester scheme would see this single carriageway route dualled between Sparkford and Podimore Roundabout, creating a section of some 30 miles of uninterrupted dual carriageway.
The planned Taunton to Southfields scheme will see a dual carriageway created from the M5 to A303, which will reduce congestion, improve journey times and improve safety.
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.