Initial preparations for road improvements at the Forder Valley (Leigham) Roundabout will get underway next week.
Site clearance will begin on Monday 20 January to enable final ground surveys to be carried out and get the site ready for construction work later in the year.
This will include removing trees and vegetation around the roundabout and on both sides of Forder Valley Road.
Between 80 and 100 trees will need to be removed, along with shrubs and undergrowth, with around 300 new trees being planted on and off-site to replace those lost.
Landscaping plans for the scheme will see improved planting that will better blend the verges of the highway into meadow grasslands, then into tree and shrub planting at the woodland edge before merging with the existing mature woodlands of the Forder Valley.
A more diverse range of grasses and wildflower species for the meadows will provide excellent habitats for insects and invertebrates and the woodland edge will be planted with native species of tree and shrubs, providing food and shelter for the local wildlife.
The first phase of replanting will begin next month and will include planting a section of hedgerow containing around 100 trees to help enhance a wetland area at May’s Marsh – just to the south-east of the Forder Valley Interchange site.
The new 300 trees are in addition to the 14,500 trees that will be planted as part of the neighbouring Forder Valley Link Road scheme.
The site clearance works will take around eight weeks to complete. To do this safely, some lane closures will be needed but only during off-peak hours (9.30am to 3.30pm) between Monday and Friday, with the occasional Saturday.
The lane closures will be in various locations as the works progress, starting with a one lane closure on the Delamere Road entry to the roundabout. The short merge from the roundabout onto Forder Valley Road will also be reduced to one lane.
The traffic management programme will depend on progress and the best way to keep up-to-date with the lane closures is by signing up to receive scheme updates by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also sign up to receive our weekly Roadworks Roundup.
The Forder Valley Interchange scheme will create extra road space and improve traffic flow, upgrading and extending the merge from the roundabout heading northbound on Forder Valley Road and providing an additional lane on the southbound approach to the roundabout.
It will relieve the congestion and queueing that currently extends back onto the roundabout and down the A38 westbound off-slip and add value to the Forder Valley Link Road. Walking and cycling facilities will also be upgraded.