Major roadworks to begin in Burnley
Work on the Â£2m. scheme, which will start on June 10th, is due to be completed in spring 2018, and involves improvements to four junctions along Active Way
The most significant changes will be to the roundabouts, with traffic lights to be added to the roundabout junction with Royle Road and Brown Street, and the existing roundabout at Westgate, St James's Street and Queen's Lancashire Way to be changed from a roundabout to a crossroads controlled by traffic lights.
New traffic signals which feature technology to make traffic movements as efficient as possible will also be installed at the junctions of Active Way, Bank Top and Kingsway, and Active Way and Church Street. All of the improvements will result in better crossing facilities for pedestrians.
The scheme is the next step in the ongoing programme to unlock the potential for economic growth along the M65, known as the Hyndburn Burnley Pendle Growth Corridor, which has already resulted in improvements to a number of junctions near the motorway, and upgrades of the Manchester Road and Rose Grove railway stations.
The programme totalling around Â£12m is being funded by Â£8m from the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership Growth Fund with further contributions totaling around Â£4m from Lancashire County Council, and Burnley, Pendle and Hyndburn borough councils, along with the European and Regional Growth Fund. Drivers are asked to leave more time for their journeys until the work.Marcus Leigh, highways manager for East Lancashire, said: "This scheme is a priority for the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership to improve access to key development sites nearby, particularly Burnley College, the UcLan campus, and the planned new business park. "It will increase the capacity of these junctions and ensure that higher traffic levels as Burnley's economy grows will not lead to unacceptable delays. Once completed, the lights will be coordinated to improve traffic flow through these junctions. "This is a lengthy project in a busy area and we're highly aware of the need to minimise disruption to people's journeys as far as we can.
"We're particularly conscious of the need to support nearby businesses while work is ongoing. Access to businesses will be kept open at all times, and we'll be using prominent signs to indicate that they're open as normal. "Our approach will be to maintain traffic movements in all directions as far as possible throughout, however we will need to close lanes to traffic as the project progresses which will result in some delays. "For some of the work we'll need to close the road but this will only be overnight and outside peak hours. We'll let people know when these closures are coming up. "The work at the two traffic signal junctions will be relatively short term, and will be phased in with the bigger and longer lasting pieces of work at the roundabouts. "We're sorry for the disruption while we carry out this work which, once completed, will reduce delays by helping traffic to flow better, and would ask people to leave more time for their journeys in the meantime." The initial few weeks of the scheme will involve smaller scale work resulting in only very low impact on traffic. The county council has been working closely with bus companies to minimise disruption to their services, with existing bus stops in the area expected to stay where they are, or very near their current locations.