Kent Elms Junction
On 21 November, work started on widening the Kent Elms junction of the A127. This project involves installing additional lanes on both inbound and outbound carriageways, replacing the footbridge and introducing attractive new landscaping. The work is scheduled to continue through the spring 2017.
The £6.5m project aims to improve the traffic flow across this key junction into and out of the town and make it easier for people with reduced mobility and those with pushchairs to cross the highway. A new surface-level pedestrian crossing will be introduced across the A127 to the east of the junction near Mendip Crescent and a new one in Rayleigh Road. These will be timed to coincide with the main traffic light sequence. The pedestrian crossing next to the Kent Elms surgery, which opened in December 2015, will be retained and slightly modified.
The majority of the funding for the Kent Elms junction improvement (£5.1m) is the Local Growth Fund, with the remainder coming from the Council’s Capital budget.
The Council and Eurovia are working hard to keep disruption to motorists and neighbours to a minimum throughout these projects. There is a dedicated Public Liaison Officer, in place to keep residents, businesses and motorists advised of the works.
Revised work programme for Kent Elms junction
Southend-on-Sea Borough Council is putting measures in place to ensure traffic into and out of the town flows as smoothly as possible during the summer season after encountering delays by utility companies which will see some outbound street works activity continuing into summer.
Work by National Grid to divert their gas main was scheduled to take three weeks to complete. However, it has subsequently taken 16 weeks to complete their work. This has caused a knock-on delay to other utilities work that needs to be carried out at the junction. As much as possible, we have focussed our work on areas of the highway that are not affected by the gas mains diversions, predominantly in the north (Southend-bound) side of the junction. Over 80% of the work is still scheduled for completion in mid-June. However, the result of this unforeseen delay is that we will need to continue some work on the south (London-bound) side of the junction through to September.
Though these utilities delays were beyond our control, we have worked up a revised programme with our contractor, Eurovia, which aims to minimise disruption to traffic during the peak season. Work on inbound carriageways is still scheduled to complete before the summer but there will now be some off-peak closures of single lanes on the London-bound carriageway during the summer period.
We have put the following arrangements in place to minimise pressure on the A127 during busy holiday periods.
Easter and end-of-May school holidays
In consideration of the impact of lane closures during these busy periods, there will be two lanes Southend-bound kept open throughout the day. On the London-bound carriageway, there will be no peak lane closures and Eurovia will also endeavour to keep off-peak (09.30 – 15.30) lane closures to a minimum.
Summer school holidays
All lanes will be completed on the Southend-bound carriageway before the summer holidays. Some off-peak lane closures may still be necessary at times but a minimum of two lanes on the Southend-bound carriageway will be kept open throughout the day. On the London-bound carriageway, there will be no peak lane closures and Eurovia will also endeavour to keep off-peak (09.30 – 15.30) lane closures to a minimum.
We are currently asking companies to submit bids for the replacement of the footbridge over the A127 at Kent Elms. We anticipate that the bridge will be assembled offsite and swiftly constructed in modules in the autumn. This will keep the number and duration of lane closures to a minimum at this point. We have made a commitment to keeping school crossing patrols in place during term times until a new footbridge is in place.
We apologise for any inconvenience caused by these works and thank you in advance for your cooperation.
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Page last updated: 10/04/2017