Two key infrastructure projects have moved a step closer, with Highways England setting out its preferred options for upgrading the key route to the Port of Liverpool and creating a new junction on the M56 near Runcorn.
The announcement follows public consultations earlier this year. The £250m Liverpool project will see the creation of a three-mile bypass through the Rimrose Valley, connecting Princess Way to Broom’s Cross Road.
A roundabout will be built at the junction connecting Broom’s Cross Road, Brickwall Lane and the bypass. Broom’s Cross Road will be upgraded to a dual carriageway from the new roundabout to Switch Island, where the A5036 connects with the M57 and M58. The scheme is intended to take freight away from residential areas on the congested A5036.
On the M56, a £60m scheme is proposed that will see the creation of Junction 11a, providing a new link to the Mersey Gateway bridge and a more direct route to the M56 from south Runcorn. The junction will link to a new crossroads for the A533 Southern Expressway and Murdishaw Avenue, north of the motorway. The crossroads will replace the existing roundabout.
Tim Gamon, Highways England’s regional delivery director for the North West, said: “Both these major road schemes will help to bring significant economic benefits to the North West and we’re now at the stage where we can set out our preferred options for the projects.
“The new bypass will take the existing traffic away from the A5036 as well as managing the significant increase in vehicle numbers that are anticipated with the port’s growth.
“The new junction on the M56 will also benefit local residents by taking traffic away from residential areas as well as providing a new route to the Mersey Gateway bridge – an important new link between Cheshire and Merseyside.”
Detailed designs will now be developed for both schemes, with construction due to start by spring 2020.