M56 eastbound slip road at Junction 12 to close for five weeks for essential Mersey Gateway works
Drivers using the M56 through Cheshire are being advised that the eastbound exit slip road at junction 12 for Runcorn will be closed for up to five weeks next month as the Mersey Gateway Project enters an important new phase.
Much of the work away from the main bridge site has focused on improving the local road network just off the M56 at junction 12 and as that continues the closure of the eastbound exit slip from the motorway will be needed from Monday 12 October for around five weeks.
The slip road has to be closed in order to allow construction workers to safely develop part of the new infrastructure that will connect the traffic travelling between Halton and the M56 motorway.
The Merseylink consortium and Halton Borough Council have worked closely with Highways England, which is responsible for maintaining and operating England’s motorways, to plan the works, keep potential disruption to a minimum and set up an official diversion route.
The diversion route will take eastbound traffic on to junction 11, before directing drivers back to junction 12, on to the westbound exit slip from the motorway and then in towards Runcorn and Widnes or south towards Frodsham.
Drivers will still be able to get on to the M56 at junction 12 in both directions.
Hugh O’Connor, General Manager of Merseylink, said: “This is a temporary but essential closure to allow us to safely link the M56 eastbound slip road at junction 12 to the improved road network we are developing in the area. We’ve been working closely with Highways England and Halton Borough Council to plan this closure and closing the road completely will allow us to deliver this element of the work as quickly as possible.”
Cllr. Rob Polhill, Leader of Halton Borough Council and Chair of the Mersey Gateway Crossings Board, said: “I know this closure will cause inconvenience for some people, but it is important to remember that the end result of the Mersey Gateway Project will be much more reliable and also faster journeys between the M56 and M62 and heading to and from almost anywhere in Halton. I’d like to thank everyone for continuing to drive safely through the roadworks whilst the works are ongoing.”
The economic, transport and social benefits the project will bring to the region include:
- 470 permanent full-time equivalent jobs on site during construction
- 4,640 permanent direct and indirect jobs
- £61.9 million a year in Gross Value Added from the new jobs by 2030.
When it opens in 2017, both the new bridge and the Silver Jubilee Bridge will be tolled, but they will be free* to Halton residents.