WORK will start on Monday on a £1million programme to boost safety and reduce congestion near the M65 motorway.
The works around junction 14 of the M65 and along Vivary Way and North Valley Road, Colne, are aimed at improving safety by reducing queues on the M65, and making junctions operate more effectively.
As these roads are particularly busy, providing access to trans-Pennine routes as well as a number of local business parks and residential areas, the work has been carefully planned with any major tasks involving lane closures due to be carried out overnight to minimise disruption to traffic.
The package of measures involves upgrading traffic signals to make them work more efficiently, widening some junctions, and changing lane priorities and signs on the approach to junctions to improve the way drivers are directed towards their destinations.
The improvements are being funded from the Department for Transport’s national productivity infrastructure fund, which aims to boost economic growth through measures to ease congestion and improve journey times.
The work will be completed in four phases over the next six months from M65 junction 14 to the Langroyd Road junction with North Valley Road.
The first phase, due to start on Monday, will take six weeks, focusing on improvements to lane allocations, signing and a short section of resurfacing at junction 14 of the M65.
Among the improvements include upgrading traffic lights, widening of roads, developing signage and will see differences to traffic flow are expected only after all the work is finished, and following a period of monitoring and evaluation where the operation of the traffic signals will be optimised.
County Cllr Keith Iddon, cabinet member for highways and transport, said: “This is one of Lancashire’s most congested routes and I’m very pleased to be able to invest in these improvements.
“Our main priority is to improve safety by reducing queues on the M65, however this scheme will also make a difference to journey times in general by increasing the capacity and efficiency of the junctions along Vivary Way and North Valley Road.
“We’re aware this is a very busy route and have carefully planned how this project will be carried out to minimise disruption as much as possible, with any work which can only be done with lane closures in place due to take place overnight.”