Action for Congestion Hotspots

Croft Road by The Hive, Sidbury and St Johns will undergo improvements with the aim of reducing congestion.
Croft Road by The Hive, Sidbury and St Johns will undergo improvements with the aim of reducing congestion.
Published Monday, 4th February 2019

Work will begin on three key congestion hotspots in Worcester over the next 12 months.

Croft Road by The Hive, Sidbury and St John's will undergo improvements with the aim of relieving congestion.

The works are mainly funded through a successful bid of £3.2 million to Worcestershire County Council from the Department for Transport (DfT).

The funding, which has come via the National Productivity Investment Fund (NPIF), is ring-fenced for investment in areas that are key to boosting productivity including for local roads. The funding is focussed to tackle known congestion 'pinch points' and inefficient junctions along the main A44 west-east axis through the City Centre. This includes the sections between St Johns and Sidbury, as well as Croft Road to the north and all the key approaches to these areas.

At Croft Road, the current zebra crossing enables more than 2,000 pedestrians and nearly 200 cyclists to cross that part of the A449 on an average day without signalised control.

This leads to frequent and long interruptions to the traffic flow in both directions along this route as well as affecting the signals to the south at Dolday.

Plans for Croft Road, which include the introduction of a signal controlled Toucan crossing in addition to amending access to the Cattlemarket carpark, are currently being finalised.

The County Council anticipate these improvements will commence before the summer with more details being released in the next couple of months.

Another focus for the Council is improvement to the Sidbury and City Walls Road signalised junctions. 

The overall aim, which will see the introduction of new signalling equipment to update the current 40 year old installation, will be to improve the efficiency and intelligence between the two sites.

The upgrade will allow the sites to 'communicate' to each other when traffic flows vary and green light timings need to alter. This scheme will also consider enhancements to street lighting, footways and crossings facilities. Works are anticipated to start later this year and more details will be confirmed closer to the start date.

The third hotspot for improvement is St John's. The Council is planning to improve road widths, pavements and crossing facilities to make it easier for all those using the area to move around. Initial designs for the scheme have begun with more details planned for release in the autumn.

Worcestershire County Council's Cabinet Member with Responsibility for Highways, Cllr Alan Amos said: "It's great news that we will soon be in a position to share more details on these key schemes after a period of closely evaluating the issue and potentials solution available.

"Cutting congestion remains a priority for the council and with the additional funding proposed for the next 3 years, even more can be done to tackle the hotspots around the county".

The Council is also proposing a further £5 million, over 3 years, in this year's budget to tackle four hotspots in Kidderminster, Evesham, Bromsgrove and the staggered junction just outside of Upton upon Severn. The budget is due to be considered at the next full council meeting on 14 February.

Some of the funding to relieve congestion announced in a previous budget, has already been used to improve signals at key junctions across the city such as Shrub Hill/Midland Road, Seabright Avenue/London Road and the signals outside of Waitrose on London Road. These improvements include adding new technology which ensures that more time is given to the priority flow of traffic and therefore reducing congestion. Next on the list is to roll out junction improvements at North Quay crossing, Dolday and The Butts.

In addition, another £3.6m NPIF funded scheme, which focuses on improving walking and cycling routed in Bromsgrove, is well underway.

Sites outside of the City also include improvements at Queen Street -Droitwich, Worcester Road Kidderminster, Icknield Street Drive, Redditch and Evesham Road, Astwood Bank.

To keep up to date with progress on everything the council are doing to relieve congestion, visit www.worcestershire.gov.uk/relievingcongestion