National Highways says latest changes have speeded up traffic on Windy Harbour bypass

National Highways says this week’s changes to the new A5858 Windy Harbour bypass have speeded up traffic – and the road will be completed by February

The road authority partially opened the bypass to road users in December as part the multi-million project aimed at combatting chronic congestion on this key access road linking the North Fylde area to the motorway.

But after it opened last month, motorists complained that traffic flow was slower tahn ever and questioned why it had been opened before the full project was finished.

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But National Highways says the latesgt work it has carried out have rectifield some of the issues and allowed traffic to now move more quickly.

What is the latest work being done?

Windy Harbour to Poulton junction

The team removed the contraflow between Windy Harbour and Poulton junction earlier this week. This means that traffic is now running under a 30mph speed limit in single file, on both the east and westbound carriageways. The change will enhance the flow of traffic and safety on the bypass.

They will switch on the permanent lights and open all remaining slip roads at Poulton junction by mid-February, which will improve journeys further.

Skippool Bridge junction

They will switch on the permanent lights at Skippool Bridge junction and open the right turn onto Mains Lane from the bypass in February.

Skippool junction

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Following overnight surfacing work, the permanent lights were due to be switched on today (January 19).

The team will have to hold the lights on red while tests are run, which may cause disruption to traffic.

This work will be carried out over two days during off-peak hours when there is less traffic on the road and it is safe to do so.

The permanent lights have undergone comprehensive tests and engineers will be on site to oversee the switch.

De-trunking on Mains Lane and Shard junction

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This week (commencing 15 January) work started to de-trunk Mains Lane. De-trunking is returning an A-road back to a local one and handing responsibility for that road to the local highway authority (Lancashire County Council).

Improvements to Mains Lane will include reduced speed limits, a new cycleway, upgrades to traffic signals and the installation of a new pedestrian crossing at Shard junction.

This work will make the area much safer for walkers, cyclists and horse riders and will reflect its new function as a local road.

What National Highways says

The road authority said in its latest updsate: “As you will be aware, there is still traffic management in place as we work towards full opening of the bypass.

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“We have taken significant steps to improve traffic flows and the operation of the new bypass. This includes adjusting the timings of the temporary traffic lights on the approach to Poulton junction and opening new slip roads when we complete surfacing work at various locations.

“We anticipate that the bypass will become fully operational by the end of February, making use of all four lanes at the national speed limit (70mph). For safety, the speed limit will be reduced to 40mph on the approach to Skippool Bridge junction and 50mph towards Poulton junction.”