A new link road for buses between the University of St Mark & St John (Marjon) and Derriford Hospital has been officially opened today.
The road between Plymbridge Lane and Derriford Road has been widened to provide a new two-way link for buses, which allows them to access the university, Nuffield Health and Derriford Hospital without needing to use Derriford Roundabout.
Developed in partnership with the university, Nuffield Health and Derriford Hospital, the Marjon Link Road Scheme also includes a shared pedestrian and cycle path and provides better access to the university campus.
We were awarded over £1 million for the scheme through the Department for Transport’s Local Pinch Point Fund, which has been boosted by an additional £680,000 of developer contributions and £950,000 from the Council.
The new link road makes it easier to access Derriford by bus, will help to ease congestion on the main route into Plymouth from the north and, together with the recently built Runway Road, provides some of the strategic transport infrastructure needed to support Derriford’s future growth.
As part of the scheme a dedicated lane has been provided on Derriford Road for traffic turning right into the hospital, which will reduce delays not only for buses serving the hospital but also other traffic wanting to travel straight on at this junction, towards Estover. This should improve journey times for people needing to access the Plymouth Science Park and other business sites.
The layout of this junction has been improved, with safer crossings for pedestrians and cyclists. A new roundabout has also been installed at the northern end of the link road, along with new street lighting and new bus stops with shelters.
Work to build the new link road was carried out by our highways contractor Amey.
Councillor Mark Coker, Cabinet Member for Strategic Transport and Planning, said: “The new Marjon Link Road will make a big difference to the daily lives of people living, working and studying in Derriford, as well as those travelling in and out of Plymouth along this busy route.
“It will help to reduce congestion at Derriford Roundabout and improve the reliability of bus services – which should encourage operators to extend more of their services to call in at Derriford Hospital and the university.
“The scheme has also provided safer facilities for pedestrians and cyclists and forms part of the new north-to-south cycle route between Derriford and the city centre.”
Dr Karen Cook, Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of St Mark & St John said: “The new road will make journeys much smoother for students, staff and those accessing the knowledge, skills and business hub that is the North of Plymouth. We want to thank our Sport Centre customers in particular for their understanding during the works period.”
Andrew Davies, Facilities and Environmental Services Manager at Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “From the trust’s perspective this will improve public transport access to the hospital, benefitting staff, patients and their families; it improves safety, particularly for our employees walking to and from the park and ride and it continues the investment from Plymouth City Council in public transport infrastructure serving Derriford Hospital.”
Ashley Taylor, Operations Manager at Target Travel, said: “Sometimes it is the smaller road schemes that can make the greatest difference to the bus operators.”
Richard Stevens, Managing Director of Plymouth Citybus, said: “Plymouth Citybus applaud Plymouth City Council for investing in this key piece of bus infrastructure, which will provide much needed links the University of St Mark & St John. It will no doubt help improve bus journey times and therefore the reliability of our Blueflash services in the area.”
There are a number of schemes now being progressed to support jobs and homes in the north of the city including the Derriford Transport Scheme, which will upgrade Derriford Roundabout and the William Prance Road junction and the new Forder Valley Link Road, which will better connect the east of the city with proposed new developments the Derriford area.