Motorway improvements to bring better safety and visibility for drivers

Motorists in South Yorkshire can look forward to safer journeys and better visibility thanks to a range of improvements which start this month.

The first stage of the Highways England scheme gets underway on Monday 21 October at various locations on the M18 between junction 1 (Bramley) and junction 7 (for M62), and lasts for eight weeks, weather permitting.

This will see new safety barriers installed and existing ones renewed, resurfacing work, and the replacement of road studs, marker posts, 42 illuminated signs and two advanced direction signs. The work will be carried out overnight Monday to Thursday between 9pm and 6am, and 10pm to 6am on Fridays, for full road closures. Where overnight lane closures are required, these will be between 8pm and 6am.

Highways England project manager Andy Barlow said: “The improvements we are making are part of our £80m investment in Yorkshire and the Humber. It follows our £2m investment between July and September, when we resurfaced sections of the 26-mile motorway, and renewed road markings and reflective road studs.

“Some of the upcoming work relies on good weather, so hopefully we will get a spell of clear conditions that will allow us to get the job done. I want to thank drivers in advance for their patience.”

Next month the bridge joints at Wadworth Bridge, which carries the M18 over the A1(M) at junction 2, will be replaced to strengthen the structure. This overnight work begins in early November and lasts for around four weeks if the weather conditions are fine. Also in November, overhead electronic signs will be renewed along the route and a safety barrier will be replaced on the M18 southbound to M1 northbound link road.

To carry out these improvements safely and with minimum disruption Highways England will use a variety of roadworks layouts at different times, including full overnight closures, hard shoulder and lane closures, and narrow lanes with temporary speed limits. During the day the carriageway will be open as normal. Signs informing drivers of upcoming closures will help people to plan their journeys accordingly.

When the project is completed, a further phase of safety barrier and drainage work will start in March 2020 on the link road between the M18 and the M1 junction 32 and on the M18 between junctions 2 and 3. Details about this will be announced nearer the time.