New ‘link road’ near Stoneleigh could help calm HS2 traffic

Where Phase 1 of the new link road will be. Copyright: Google Earth
Where Phase 1 of the new link road will be. Copyright: Google Earth

Details of a new ‘link road’ on the A46 to help calm HS2 traffic have been revealed by Warwickshire County Council.

Construction of the road is planned to be split into three phases, and it is hoped the road will solve a lot of traffic issues associated with the area.

The diagram of planned works during Phase 1 of the project.

The diagram of planned works during Phase 1 of the project.

Phase 1 of the link road would see a gyratory built at the Stoneleigh junction off the A46, a new roundabout on the west side of Stoneleigh Lane, and a bridge between Dalehouse Lane and Stoneleigh Lane.

It is hoped this part of the plans will be finished by 2019 before the heavy traffic for the construction of HS2 arrives, easing congestion problems the traffic would bring.

Warwickshire County Council and Coventry City Council are applying for government funding to pay for this part of the project, with the outcome expected early next year.

Phase 2 aims to provide better access to Warwick University by linking the A46 at Stoneleigh with Westwood Heath via the A452.

The council hope this new road will reduce the number of drivers using minor roads like Crackley Lane to get to the university and support the housing earmarked for Westwood Heath in Warwick district’s Local Plan.

Finally, Phase 3 aims to provide a new link between Phase 2 of the plans and Solihull via either the A45 or the A452.

This stage of the project is at a very early stage, and depends on the successful completion of phases 1 and 2.

In his report, Adrian Hart, the team leader for transport policy at Warwickshire County Council, said: “There is an emerging need to improve connectivity from Coventry and Warwickshire to the University of Warwick and the key employment sites in its vicinity, in order to support the growth of this area over the next 10 to 15 years.

“Phase 1 will provide resilience and flexibility to this part of the network during the construction of HS2.

“The A46 provides the glue which links these various areas together, providing connectivity for companies such as Jaguar Land Rover and its supply chain.

“Within this context, it is vital that key junctions such as Stoneleigh are fit for purpose.”

The traffic generated by the construction of HS2 has been a major concern for councillors.

The vehicles would be able to use Ashow Road under current proposals after it was found the A46 would see higher amounts of construction traffic than first thought.

Jeremy Wright MP strongly criticised this idea when giving evidence to Parliament in January this year.

He said: “I think this is a very bad idea. Ashow Road is a narrow road which is used by equestrian traffic and pedestrians, and it is not suitable for construction traffic.”