Ring-road drivers warned to expect lengthy delays

June 30 2017

THEY might be several miles from Hanham, but the road works due to start this month on the Avon Ring Road at Bromley Heath are expected to have repercussions in our area.

THEY might be several miles from Hanham, but the road works due to start this month on the Avon Ring Road at Bromley Heath are expected to have repercussions in our area.

Repairs are being carried out to the bridge over the river Frome, meaning that traffic between the Bromley Heath roundabout and the Hambrook traffic lights will be reduced from four lanes to two.

The work is being carried out to the southern viaduct, with all vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians being diverted on to the northern viaduct.

The  1960s southern viaduct, which carries approximately 55,000 vehicles and 500 cyclists a day requires essential maintenance work on: pier strengthening, bearing replacement, drainage improvements, water proofing, parapet and safety fence replacement, concrete repairs, and abnormal load carrying capacity improvements.

The work was due to take a year but at the eleventh hour  - on June 28 - funding was agreed to reduce the timescale to 33 weeks.

South Gloucestershire Council has warned of delays of up to two hours at peak times, with possible jams  of two hours and a knock-on impact on routes across the area.

Drivers from the Hanham and Kingswood district who need to get on to the motorway network are being advised to use the A420 and A46 to get to junction 18 of the M4 rather than trying to get to the M32 at Hambrook.  

Alternative routes are also advised for commuters trying to get to Bristol's north fringe, including Parkway Station and Southmead Hospital.

It is hoped that the 220-place park and ride at Lyde Green can be opened early in time for the project but no date has yet been revealed. 

The latest updates can be found on the council’s website www.southglos.gov.uk/bhviaduct 

The additional £2.8m of funding to get the work done more quickly was agreed at the first meeting of Joint Committee, made up of the new West of England Combined Authority members and North Somerset Council. 

Councillor Colin Hunt, South Gloucestershire's cabinet member for transport, said: “Reducing the length of the work will help to alleviate congestion and the impact of diversions on local communities, commuters and people travelling through the area. We know the scheme will cause significant disruption for people but we are trying everything we can to mitigate this. 

“We have been carrying out a series of engagement meetings for the public to find out more about the plans and the impact it will have on their day-to-day movements. These have been well-attended and I would like to thank everyone for taking the time to come along and talk to us. 

"We are listening to people and where possible, we have been able to adjust our plans based on residents’ feedback.” 

Mayor of the West of England Tim Bowles added: "This is a good example of where our partnership working is funding the sort of projects that have both community and strategic benefits for the wider region."