Drivers travelling between Chester and Wrexham are being urged to avoid the roundabout that links the A55 to the A483 while work takes place to upgrade the junction.
The Highways Agency is carrying out a £5.3 million scheme to tackle congestion and improve journey times at the junction, but there are currently lane closures on the roundabout which are causing significant delays.
When the project is completed at the end of March, the number of lanes on the roundabout will be increased from three to four, and traffic lights will control the flow of vehicles through the junction.
Drivers travelling to and from the southern part of Chester are being encouraged to use the A534 and the A41 while the lane closures are in place. Drivers heading to and from the northern part of the city can use the A550, A55, A494 and M56 as an alternative route.
The lane closures on the roundabout were introduced last week and the Highways Agency is adding extra signs to surrounding roads to warn drivers about the delays. It has also released a new map showing possible alternative routes.
Mark Mosley, Project Manager at the Highways Agency, said:
This project will help to tackle congestion on a key route between the North West and Wales, and I hope drivers will continue to bear with us while the work takes place.
The roundabout is currently down to one lane on a short section and two lanes elsewhere so this is having a significant impact on journey times. We’re doing all we can to minimise the effect of the lane closures but are urging road users to find alternative routes if at all possible.
Drivers will see a major improvement to their journeys when the project is completed, as we’re increasing the capacity of the roundabout as well as making several other changes to help the flow of traffic.
Work on the project began in September last year and new sets of traffic lights have already been installed at the A483 junction with Rough Hill as well as at the junction linking the A483 to the B5445 Wrexham Road, replacing the mini roundabout.
A separate £129,000 scheme has also been completed to provide CCTV cameras at the roundabout, and work is due to take place later this year to install a new footbridge over the A55.
The £5.3 million project, part of the Government’s £317 million pinch point programme, is designed to support Chester Business Park and help generate investment which will potentially lead to more than 11,500 jobs and 1,700 homes in the area by 2020.
The pinch point programme, devised with the input of councils and Local Enterprise Partnerships, is designed to help stimulate new development and local economic growth by improving road safety and tackling congestion bottle necks. In all, 28 projects worth £66 million are being delivered across the North West.
More details on the scheme are available on the Highways Agency’s website, where drivers can also sign up to receive email alerts.
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.