Notorious Hull roundabout's upgrade WILL go ahead despite further delay to £250m A63 scheme
By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: 24 Aug 2017
A scheme to tackle congestion at a notorious city centre roundabout remains on track - despite further delays being announced to the long-awaited Castle Street upgrade.
On Monday, Highways England announced that work on the proposed £250m upgrade of the A63 at Castle Street will not now get underway until 2020, with completion expected in 2025.
However, during the same meeting with Hull politicians at the Guildhall, it was announced the separate £6.3m scheme to redesign the nearby Garrison Road roundabout - the scene of several fatal accidents in recent years - is going ahead as planned.
Work is expected to begin on this scheme in Spring 2018.
Cllr Mancey said: "That was the one chink of positivity to emerge from our meeting we held with Highways England officials."
Despite the addition of extra traffic signals, the roundabout, which carries traffic to the city's eastern docks as well as the Victoria Dock housing estate, has become a rush hour 'choke point'.
Cllr Mancey and current Hull West MP Emma Hardy's predecessor, Alan Johnson, pressed both lobbied Highways England to address the problem. Ms Hardy has not taken on the issue.
Under plans, the main east-west A63 route will run through the middle of the existing roundabout in a so-called 'hamburger' design.
The number of approach lanes to the roundabout will increase from two to three, while new traffic lights will control the connecting junctions of Great Union Street and Plimsoll Way.
Westbound access from Victoria Dock via Plimsoll Way would involve the construction of a new slip lane, allowing drivers more time to join the main traffic flow on the A63 heading towards Myton Bridge.
BUSY: Garrison Road roundabout is well-used by traffic heading to the docks and Victoria Dock housing estate
In a statement, Highways England said: "We are committed to delivering the important A63 improvement which will relieve congestion and improve accessibility to the Port of Hull as soon as we possibly can.
"We understand the local frustration and disappointment but this is a major and complex project which requires meticulous planning to ensure it is carried out safely and efficiently.
"We continue to work hard with Hull City Council on all aspects of the scheme and to resolve the technical and practical challenges before we can submit the Development Consent Order (DCO) next summer.
"The results will give the people of Hull more reliable journeys by easing traffic flows and improving access to the city.
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"Before work begins on the Castle Street major project, Highways England will be carrying out a scheme to cut congestion and improve safety at the Garrison Road roundabout, with works commencing in Spring 2018. A further announcement will be made about this scheme later this year."
Cash for the Garrison Road junction on the A63 is part of a £220m investment programme in new road projects announced in Chancellor Philip Hammond’s budget earlier this year.
In the five years to 2014, there were 21 accidents on the roundabout in which people were either killed or seriously injured.
In 2010 a female cyclist was killed when she was struck by an unsecured refrigeration unit that slipped off the back of a lorry as it negotiated the roundabout.