Get involved! Send your photos, video, news & views by texting EJ NEWS to 80360 or e-mail us
Are bridge traffic jams a taste of things to come?
12:00pm Saturday 7th July 2012 in News
TRAFFIC came to a standstill in Evesham this week as roadworks set up on Abbey Bridge caused major delays for frustrated motorists.
Drivers said it took about 35 minutes to travel less than a mile as four-way traffic lights at the junction between Cheltenham Road and Pershore Road caused a tailback into the town centre.
Former district councillor Martin King said the journey from Swan Lane to Burford Road, which normally takes five to 10 minutes, took nearly 40 minutes.
He also said he was concerned that this was a taste of what is to come when Abbey Bridge is closed to allow it to be rebuilt.
“The volume of traffic turning around was incredible,”
said Mr King.
“People travelling from Evesham train station to Hampton were forced to go via Fladbury and Cropthorne.
If this is a taste of what’s to come people will start shopping in Pershore when the work begins.
“The town might be open but it might be empty. We have just not been told anything.
Work happens and it kills the town stone dead.
Business owners have told me that their trade was flat.”
Severn Trent Water is working on the bridge and the project is not due to be completed until Wednesday, August 8.
Worcestershire county councillor John Smith, cabinet member with responsibility for highways and transport, said: “There is a major Severn Trent water main that runs over the Abbey Bridge and that has to be moved before work on the bridge begins.
“They had a four-way traffic signal in place. We have now instructed the contractors to do away with the four-way traffic signals and put in three-way signals.
“The more preparatory work done in advance the more smoothly the work should go later.”
Abbey Bridge will be closed for 10 weeks next summer and alternative routes for traffic during that period are still to be announced.