North Devon Link Road improvements now underway
- Credit: DCC
Work has started on a major upgrade to the North Devon Link Road this week.
A turf cutting was carried out by councillor Andrea Davis, Devon County Council’s Cabinet Member for Infrastructure and Development, to mark the start of the A361 improvements between South Molton and the Portmore roundabout at Barnstaple.
Contractor Alun Griffiths will be carrying out the work to widen sections of the road in order to provide better and safer overtaking opportunities and improve journey time reliability.
Eight junctions will also be upgraded to improve safety, and facilities for pedestrians and cyclists will be introduced with new segregated pedestrian/cycle crossings of the road at Bishops Tawton and at Landkey Junction.
Work is initially starting in a number of locations which will be widened along the link road and temporary traffic lights will be in place for the first few weeks while both sides of the carriageway are cleared on these stretches.
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Once these work sites are established, two-way traffic flow will be maintained but a 40mph limit will be introduced to protect the workforce and members of the public.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps confirmed £60 million of Department for Transport (DfT) funding for the project in November.
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The scheme, which is due to be completed by the end of 2023, is expected to boost the local economy and it will also accelerate plans for 6,700 new homes in the region.
Councillor Andrea Davis, Devon County Council Cabinet Member for Infrastructure, Development and Waste, said: “I’m extremely pleased to see the start of work on this vital project and no doubt these improvements can’t come soon enough for many people.
“Those who regularly uses the link road need to be aware that every effort will be made to minimise traffic delays but unfortunately it will be unavoidable while this work is carried out. However, the long-term benefits will outweigh the short-term disruption.
“I’ve stated that this is the biggest transport investment in north Devon for a generation and I’m certain it will have an incredibly positive impact in helping to support the recovery of our local economy.”