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Highways England to mitigate impact of motorway roadworks

Highways England is taking action to reduce the impact of motorway roadworks for drivers in the north west while also looking to improve the roll-out of smart motorways.

Vehicles in heavy traffic on M6 motorway

The move will reduce the impact of roadworks on drivers in the north west

Following feedback from road users, the government company is changing the timing of some of its roadworks. The move means that work on projects to add extra lanes and better technology to the M56 near Manchester Airport as well as the M6 between Warrington and Wigan, which had been due to start this spring, will now start after current major motorway upgrades have been completed.

Highways England has also set out plans to improve how smart motorway projects are carried out on the North West’s motorways in the future. They include changes to the layout of roadworks to reduce the need for overnight diversions and finish schemes sooner. Temporary speed limits will also be increased to 60mph when it is safe for drivers and road workers, and three lanes will be maintained in each direction during the day throughout upgrades.

Mike Bull, Highways England’s smart motorways programme manager for the North West, said: “We’re committed to the upgrades; we are simply changing the timetable for projects on the M56 and M6.

“We’re also reviewing how we carry out major upgrades so that we can minimise disruption as much as possible and maintain connections for drivers using the road network.”

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day.