Main works to start on new motorway junction

Highways Reporters

Construction of a new motorway junction will start next month to open up the i54 South Staffordshire business park.

The joint venture has seen Wolverhampton City and Staffordshire County Councils invest £40m in the motorway junction and other infrastructure on the site.

The cash will be repaid back through future business rates collected by South Staffordshire Council.

Contractor Birse Civils will begin the main construction works during the week beginning March 18.

The planned construction will include the building of a new road bridge over the M54 motorway to the west of the existing junction 2 (A449). The existing junction slip roads will be extended and new roundabouts constructed to allow full access to the site.

The brand new junction is expected to be completed towards the end of 2014 and will involve a number of overnight motorway closures, although these will be kept to a minimum.

A temporary 50mph speed restriction will be in place throughout the works and narrow lane running will be in operation. Lane closures on the slip roads to the west side of junction 2 of the M54 will also be in place.

Staffordshire County Council leader Philip Atkins said: “Normally business sites are built near existing motorway junctions but here we are turning this approach on its head, creating a junction to solely serve this development site.

"Making i54 South Staffordshire as accessible as possible means it has become one of the major draws for businesses to locate here and for those considering making it their base in the future it offers many opportunities.

“Construction of the junction is a significant milestone in the development of the site and it is rewarding to see it reach this stage. We knew it would take considerable investment and work to make this a leading centre for business and connectivity is an integral part of this.”

Extensive ground works and infrastructure installation has already been completed across the site. A 240-tonne accommodation bridge over the M54 has also been put in place.
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