The £30m Aber Tai’r Meibion improvement scheme is moving ahead, with safety measures in place to allow work to begin should covid – 19 restrictions be in place at the time of construction.
Detailed design work is currently underway and construction is now scheduled to begin in September. Additional time and funding was required to plan the work so it could take place safely during the covid-19 pandemic.
The scheme will improve safety along a 2.2km stretch of the carriageway by removing direct accesses off the A55 as well as removing eight gaps in the central reservation which currently allow slow moving agricultural vehicles to cross the A55.
It also includes over four kilometres of new and improved active travel facilities to encourage cycling and walking, supporting the principles of a low carbon society.
It will also deliver more flood protection for the A55, though the construction of an improved drainage system boosting the route’s resilience.
The work is being delivered by Alun Griffiths contractors and will include a number of community benefits including offering opportunities for trainees and apprentices.
Minister for Transport and North Wales Ken Skates said: “This is a key scheme for the improvement of the A55. Additional time was required to plan the construction of the scheme with covid-19 regulations in place and we are now in a position where we can look ahead to construction later in September.
“Detailed design work is already well underway by the contractors.
“Investing in our infrastructure is more important than ever and this scheme will also be a boost for the local economy as well as improving the A55. I’d like to thank all those who have been working hard to ensure that this scheme can now begin with the safeguards in place to protect the workforce and comply with the covid-19 regulations.”
Griffiths’ Executive Director Martyn Evans said: “We are delighted that work is now due to commence to deliver these vital safety improvements on the A55 – providing safer journeys for road users and improved access for those living alongside it.
“As a result of Coronavirus, we have embedded additional safety measures that exceed current Government guidance, to protect our workforce and the local communities in which we will be working.
“Griffiths remain committed to minimising impact on local residents, businesses and the travelling public during construction. Our Community Engagement Officer will be using new contactless means of engaging with stakeholders which will keep everyone informed and updated. We will be sharing these shortly.
“We look forward to starting work and maximising project benefits, such as local employment and supply chain opportunities throughout all project phases.”
Construction was originally due to begin before the end of March. Additional planning was required following the covid-19 outbreak to ensure the work could be carried out safely with social distancing and other measures in place.