RESIDENTS can expect some disruption as preliminary work begins on a major road project in Leamington.
But council bosses stress that any inconvenience now will be worth it – as it will significantly reduce the increased traffic congestion anticipated in the area when new homes are built.
The first stages of a major upgrade to the Fords Foundry and Queensway roundabouts – as well as the section of Europa Way linking the two – is to begin in the coming weeks and months, in preparation for full construction, due to start next summer.
The preliminary works include ground investigations on the embankment adjacent to the McDonalds restaurant and exploratory works to identify utility services along the western side of Europa Way. These will both require some vegetation to be cleared with minimal disruption to traffic.
However, the footway/cycleway which runs parallel to McDonalds restaurant will be closed for five days from December 5. These works are early steps in the construction programme and will help inform the design and buildability of the scheme.
The project will also improve cycling facilities, including dedicated off-carriageway cycle routes and enhanced crossing facilities to enable more effective and safer crossing of roads.
The Warwick District Local Plan has identified that approximately 4,500 homes will be built within the area by 2029, with an additional 3,000 homes in Stratford district, which will impact the highways network. Opportunities for increased employment and job creation are also predicted.
Without the proposed enhancement works, the anticipated traffic congestion and delays could potentially undermine the predicted economic growth of the area, as well as cause disruption to traffic and journey times in the wider area.
Coun Wallace Redford, Warwickshire County Council’s (WCC) spokesperson for transport and highways, said: “We are delighted the green light has been given for preparatory work to start on this major improvement project to the A452 Europa Way corridor – a key route between the M40, Leamington and Warwick. Without these improvements the situation will only worsen as new job creation and house building in the area will put even more pressure on the travel network.
“Once completed the project is expected to produce a range of benefits alongside reduced congestion, including improved journey times, increased business and retail activity in the area through improved links to Warwick and Leamington town centre,; as well as improved, or maintained air quality resulting from reduced congestion and increased cycling and walking.”
The Europa Way Improvement programme has been allocated funding from the Local Growth Fund, administered by the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership.
For more information visit www.warwickshire.gov.uk/europaway