Whitworth Road to be partially closed as Moonrakers improvement work progresses

A short section of Whitworth Road is due to be closed for an initial period of three weeks as part of the £2.8m improvements at the Moonrakers junction in Stratton.

Published: Monday, 7th September 2020

Aerial view of Moonrakers junction

The closure, which will come into effect from next Monday (14 Sep), is needed to give contractors, Alun Griffiths Ltd, the required space to progress with the next stage of the work and will help to reduce the overall length of the scheme. The closure could be extended if required.

In recent weeks progress has been made to remove the kerbs outside Clive Parade, to allow the contractor to widen the road. This initial work will eventually allow the contractor to build a dedicated left turn into Whitworth Road.

The silver birch trees that were originally in large pots alongside Cricklade Road have also been replanted at Hreod Burna Urban Forest.

Temporary traffic measures in place during the work, which were causing congestion in the local area, have been improved to allow for better traffic flow.

The contractors have also started work to temporarily increase capacity on Beechcroft Road from one lane to two, to allow additional vehicles to pass through the traffic lights and help reduce queuing.

During the partial road closure, the timings of the temporary traffic lights will be adjusted to minimise queueing traffic.

Following resident feedback, water blocks are due to be put in place on Bradley Road and Okus Grove to prevent people using the residential streets as a cut through.

When complete, the improvement work, which is being funded by the Swindon and Wiltshire Local Enterprise Partnership’s (LEP) Local Growth Fund, will benefit all road users who can expect to see shorter and more reliable journey times, as well as reduced queuing.

Bus users will also benefit from improved bus services between North Swindon and the Town Centre.

The scheme is due for completion in spring 2021.

Councillor Maureen Penny, Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways, Maintenance and Waste Services, said: “I am pleased to say the important improvement scheme at the Moonrakers junction is progressing well.

“It is vital we carry out this work to future-proof Swindon’s road network. Once complete, this junction will provide considerable benefits for all road users.

“I do understand that road works will cause issues for motorists, residents and businesses, but I would like to thank everyone for bearing with us. The long-term gain will be well worth the short-term disruption.

“I would also really encourage residents to be considerate of other road users and residents in the area. We have seen some very poor driving and rat running to avoid the roadworks, which isn’t acceptable and could cause accidents, as well as disruption for residents living in those areas.”

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

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