Improvements to the Moonrakers junction to begin at end of July
Preparatory works will begin on site at the Moonrakers junction from Monday, 20 July.Published: Wednesday, 8th July 2020
The £2.8m scheme will be funded by the Swindon and Wiltshire Local Enterprise Partnership’s (LEP) Local Growth Fund and forms part of wider highway improvement works on the Quality Bus Corridors in Swindon.
The scheme will improve journey times and reliability for buses travelling between Tadpole Garden Village and the town centre, as well as, improve capacity for traffic using the Moonrakers junction.
Traffic modelling has shown that the new layout will improve journey times during peak traffic when compared to the current layout and will make journey times more consistent. A number of designs were tested and, due to site constraints, the new layout was selected as it provides the best outcome for all road users.
The funding will be used to change the double roundabout at the Moonrakers junction to a traffic light-controlled junction and to create a dedicated left turn from Cricklade Road to Beechcroft Road when approaching from the north, which will reduce the number of cars using the junction.
Other improvements will include re-positioning the traffic island at Headlands Grove further into Headlands Grove to reduce the speed of southbound vehicles, improving the space outside Clive Parade and creating a bus lane from Chestnut Avenue to the Moonrakers junction.
The scheme will also carry benefits for pedestrians with the introduction of safer pedestrian crossings in the area.
A temporary overnight closure of Moonrakers junction may be required at the start of the scheme to remove the existing roundabouts and mark out the new layout with cones. During the course of the work, the junction will operate with temporary traffic lights and will be open to all traffic.
Councillor Gary Sumner, Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Strategic Infrastructure, Transport & Planning, said: “The Council is leading on over £100m worth of investment to improve Swindon’s road network through various highways projects.
“The Moonrakers junction is an essential part of this investment and will help to improve journey times and reliability for motorists and buses travelling between North Swindon and the town centre.”
Councillor Maureen Penny, Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways, Maintenance and Waste Services, said: “Journeys from the north of Swindon to the town centre are often met with delays during peak times of the day, with the largest delays often experienced at the Moonrakers junction.
“This scheme of work will reduce congestion along the corridor and will positively benefit motorists, buses and the local air quality.”
Paul Moorby, SLWEP Chair, said: “This £9M investment by SWLEP is designed to improve journey times from Tadpole Garden Village and North Swindon into the Fleming Way transport hub. Schemes that make it more convenient for people to swap between cycles, buses, trains and cars are an important part of our work towards a decarbonised future.”
Residents can stay up to date with the progress of the scheme by signing up to the monthly Moonrakers newsletter: www.swindon.gov.uk/newsletter