Tuesday, September 06, 2016

Surveys underway for A595 diversion North of Whitehaven

It has been on the cards for some time that the A595 will have to be diverted North of Whitehaven for embankment repairs and this will have a massive impact on traffic flows in the West of the County.

The Moresby Hall embankment between the Lowca Junction on the A595 and the Moresby roundabout is no imminent danger of collapse, but regular safety surveys have noted movement in this Victorian structure and Highways England announced in April that they were beginning the process of planning for a replacement.

To avoid 40-mile diversions they are planning to build what was originally described as a "temporary" relief road first, though I personally think there is a strong case for making this at least part of a Whitehaven by-pass which connects with the Distington by-pass at the Moresby roundabout and creates a duel-carriageway route from Lilyhall through to South of Whitehaven.

It has been announced this week that engineering surveys to look at alternative routes are now underway.

Highways England project manager Peter Gee said:  “Staff from Kier Highways, our main contractors for Cumbria, have been out and about around the area for several months carrying out environmental studies and traffic counts as well as surveying the A595 and local roads as part of the planning phase for these major repairs.

“They’re now carrying out geotechnical surveys which will include drilling small boreholes and digging trial pits to investigate ground conditions.

“It is important to stress that while drivers and other local people will see this work going on over the next couple of months it is being done to help inform options for the diversion route as well as details of any options such as potential junction designs.

“As we said in April we expect it will take between 18 months and 2 years to complete site investigations, preliminary designs, discuss the implications with affected landowners, consult with the local community and finalise a design for the diversion before building it and then starting the embankment repair.”

Hat tip to Cumbria Crack at
http://www.cumbriacrack.com/2016/09/06/a595-embankment-diversion-surveys-underway/.

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