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Work at White Hart junction moves up a gear

Work to improve White Hart junction will step up a notch from Monday (22 June) as the next stage of work begins.

Published: Thursday, 18th June 2020
White Hart aerial - credit Urbanbuzz Media

The roundabout will be reduced to a single lane between 7.30am and 6pm on weekdays from Monday (22 June) for seven weeks to allow Osborne, the contractor carrying out the scheme, to get on site and complete the next stage of the work.

This will include the installation of ducting and drainage systems to facilitate the £30m scheme.

Work will also need to take place on the A419 slip-road southbound towards the end of the seven-week period at night to ensure this aspect of the work can be undertaken safely. Doing this work at night and while the level of traffic on the roads is currently low also means this will cause minimal disruption to motorists.  

Despite the coronavirus lockdown, preparatory work has been continuing with the team adhering to social distancing guidelines.

White Hart junction is being upgraded as part of the New Eastern Villages (NEV) development project. This development will see approximately 8,000 new homes built to the east of the A419 along with new schools, employment spaces and community and leisure facilities.

Key cycling and pedestrian routes will also be incorporated into the development as well as sufficient green spaces, including a nature reserve, playing fields and allotments.

To allow the development to progress, £72.5m is being invested to make sure the nearby roads and junctions can facilitate the extra traffic this development will generate. White Hart is one of the junctions being upgraded, along with Gablecross junction, Piccadilly roundabout and a section of Oxford Road near the Nythe Road junction.

A new road, known as the Southern Connector Road, will also form a link between the NEV and Commonhead roundabout, near the Great Western Hospital.

The upgrades to Greenbridge roundabout, which have already been undertaken, are also part of the investment in the road network in the east of the town in preparation for the housing developments.

Councillor Gary Sumner, Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Strategic Infrastructure, Transport & Planning, said: “Work to carry out these vital upgrades have been quietly going on, despite the coronavirus pandemic, but motorists will begin to see more activity on the road over the next couple of months.

“A key feature of these improvements is that we are doing them now before the 8,000 homes are built so we create additional capacity to cope with the extra traffic on our roads.

“We also had the great news last week of a £400m investment at nearby Symmetry Park, which will create 2,000 jobs, further emphasising the need to enhance our road network.”

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