© Copyright Sam Kelly

WITH just six weeks to go before a £22m project to rebuild the A338 Spur Road gets underway, more details about the necessary traffic restrictions have been revealed.

Dorset Highways has confirmed that the work, which will start on September 6, will begin with two weeks of removing vegetation, installing traffic management, speed cameras and CCTV and resurfacing around Blackwater.

There will be day time and night lane closures on both carriageways during this fortnight and also some overnight closures. The reconstruction will be in four phases:

  1. From September 21 until Christmas, the southbound carriageway will be reconstructed between Blackwater Junction and the QinetiQ access, with a 40mph contraflow on the northbound carriageway.
  2. In the New Year, work will move to the northern end of the scheme, with the reconstruction of the remaining one-mile stretch of the southern carriageway between Ashley Heath Roundabout and the QinetiQ entrance.
  3. Later on, work will then swap to the northbound carriageway and all traffic will be switched over to the newly-built southern carriageway.
  4. From March to the end of May, the northbound carriageway will be reconstructed with the contraflow traffic on the newly-built southbound side.

Throughout the work there may be times where additional overnight closures are required for surfacing work and to rearrange traffic management.

Dorset County Council is urging motorists to start thinking now about whether they can make changes to their driving habits while the project is underway.

The Spur Road will be open in both directions throughout the rebuild but with traffic down to one lane in each direction journeys are likely to take longer at peak times.

Motorists could use the train, car share or travel outside of peak times during the rebuild.

Cllr Peter Finney, cabinet member for environment, said: “This is a big operation with big machinery – we’re recycling over 90,000 tonnes of material on site which will help us greatly reduce our CO2 emissions through less material delivered. We have to carry out the work safely, but as quickly as possible, so for the duration of the work the A338 will be reduced to one lane in each direction. Bournemouth and Christchurch are open for business as usual but drivers will have to alter their habits and think more carefully about how they are going to get to their destination on time – alternative travel methods, car sharing and travelling outside peak hours will all help.”

The scheme is funded by the Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership and is part of a 5-year programme of work to unlock jobs and housing in Dorset around Bournemouth Airport.

The Spur Road, which was opened in 1969, is showing its age and its foundations are failing, meaning that it needs to be totally rebuilt rather than resurfaced.

This project affects the stretch between Ashley Heath roundabout and Blackwater Junction and will also see the installation of a new concrete central safety barrier.

The carriageway width will be brought up to current standards, a 1m hard strip will give extra space for cars to move over for emergency vehicles or in case of breakdowns and the road’s drainage will be improved.