The scheme to make improvements to transport links in the Churchfields area of Kidderminster will start later this month.
Works on the Churchfields Urban Highway Improvement Scheme will start during week commencing 14 October to support the delivery of new homes planned for the area. The scheme is being delivered by Worcestershire County Council.
Councillor Ken Pollock, Worcestershire County Council's Cabinet Member with Responsibility for Economy and Infrastructure, said: "It’s great that we’re now in a position to really push forward with this ambitious scheme.
“The improvements that are being made to the transport links in the area, will not only help to tackle congestion and improve traffic flow but they’re also an extremely important step towards delivering new homes in this priority location.”
Preparatory works have already taken place to secure the former CMS site, including establishing site boundaries, installing fencing and ground investigation works. The next phase of the scheme will focus on the main programme of works, aimed at improving traffic flow and access in and around the Churchfields area. This work includes, converting Churchfields into an A-road, redesigning the gyratory at Horsefair, making Blackwell Street one way and creating a new link road access from the A456 Ringway roundabout through to Churchfields.
There will also be a dedicated left in left out junction, providing access to St Marys Street off the Ringway.
Councillor Fran Oborski, Wyre Forest District Council’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Planning and Capital Investments, said: “I’m delighted that works on these highway improvements is about to begin, as they will be the key to delivering much needed new homes in the area as part of the Churchfields Urban Village concept the Council agreed in 2012. Since adopting the Urban Village Masterplan, the Council has been working hard with partners, landowners and the local community to put in place the funding required deliver these improvements.
“This exciting regeneration project will help reduce traffic congestion at one of the busiest approaches to Kidderminster town centre, improve air quality for local residents and hopefully will act as a catalyst for improvements to the Horsefair Local Centre.”
To allow the scheme to progress, temporary traffic lights will be in place on Churchfields, starting in November. During the works, there will be a need for lane closures on the A456 Ringway, further temporary traffic lights and, at times, full road closures of the Horsefair and Churchfields. Some footway routes around the area will also be affected. All closures will be advertised in advance and diversion routes clearly signed.
As part of the work, there will be major works required by a number of utility companies to divert and install their services. These, where possible, will be built into the programme of work to keep disruption to a minimum.
The improvements to Churchfields Highway have been made possible following a £1m investment from Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and £1.6m from Greater Birmingham Solihull LEP via the Government’s Growth Deal.
Minister of State for the Northern Powerhouse and Local Growth, the Rt Hon Jake Berry MP, said: “We are committed to boosting economic growth across the whole of the UK and ensuring every community has the support and investment it needs to flourish as we prepare to leave the EU on 31 October.
“This critical road infrastructure project, supported by £2.6 million investment from the Government’s Local Growth Fund, will not only alleviate congestion and improve traffic flow, but also open up access to the Churchfields site, facilitating access to a key new housing development.”
For more information and to keep up-to-date with the scheme visit www.worcestershire.gov.uk/churchfields