Drivers Warned Of Delays In Dorset

Major work on the Upton Bypass in Dorset gets back underway today - meaning 5 weeks of severe traffic jams for drivers.

From Monday 14 January, for five weeks, the inside lane of the A35 westbound carriageway will be closed to traffic, with drivers being urged to choose a different route or travel outside of peak times.

Dorset County Council engineers estimate with the road reduced to one lane, the morning peak traffic flow is around 200 vehicles over capacity and the evening peak traffic flow is around 800 vehicles over capacity. They say if people don't take a different route there will be a long queues and delays of up to an hour.

The lane closure is so they can carry out work to strengthen the Policemans Lane Bridge and carry out surfacing work, barrier repairs, drain cleaning and verge clearance.

Councillor Peter Finney, Dorset County Council cabinet member for highways and transportation, said: "Many drivers tend to commute on 'auto-pilot', so we're giving plenty of advance warning of this work to ensure that drivers can take action to avoid these delays from day one.

"We are carrying out this work at a time of year when the daily average number of cars using the road is at its lowest, but we know it will still have a large impact on people's daily journeys.

"Drivers should try to understand that this work is for their benefit - the road needs to be maintained so that it can continue to be used by the thousands of vehicles that use it every day."

The suggested diversion route is A349 Gravel Hill up to the Merley Roundabout and onto the A31.

From Monday 18 February, work will move to the central support columns of the bridge and the central reservation. This will close the eastbound and westbound outside lanes for five weeks.

Full details of the traffic management in the area can be found at www.dorsetforyou.com/upton-bypass-works

The traffic management is as follows:

Week 1 (14 January)

Day 1: Inside lane closed after morning peak, traffic cones in area of bridge works

Days 2 - 5: Inside lane closed, cones extended to incorporate area for verge clearance work.

Cones west of Policeman's Lane Bridge walked out at 9am and back in at 3.45pm.


Week 2 (21 January)

Inside lane closed, cones extended to incorporate area for verge clearance and drainage work

Cones west of Policeman's Lane Bridge walked out at 9am and back in at 3.45pm.


Week 3 (28 January)

As per week 2


Week 4 (4 February)

Inside lane closed, traffic cones in area of bridge works


Week 5 (11 February)

Inside lane closed, traffic cones in area of bridge works

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