WORK to fix faulty gas mains will take a day longer than planned,
Southern Gas Network has discovered more faults in pipes under London Road, Hilsea, meaning emergency repair work will continue for one day longer than anticipated.
The original problem in a 20in gas main was repaired last week. But leaks were found in another 12in main, one of which has been fixed, allowing the northbound carriageway to reopen, however work in the third lane of the southbound side will continue until Wednesday evening.
The slip road from the A27 has now been fully reopened to keep traffic flowing as well as possible.
Portsmouth City Council has given permission for work to be carried out 24 hours a day to complete it as soon as possible.
The closure, in the right-hand of the three southbound lanes, is not expected to have a significant impact on extra traffic caused by the closure of Northern Road bridge to general traffic, which begins at 5am on Wednesday.
Martin Lavers, Portsmouth City Council’s assistant head of service for traffic and street management, said: ‘Work is being done to get London Road fully open as soon as possible, but before this can happen we must be certain the pipes are safe.
‘It isn’t ideal that the work crosses over with the first day of Northern Road bridge’s closure. The fact it is the third lane on the southbound side means the impact will be minimal with two lanes still available for traffic entering Hilsea.
‘The work on Northern Road bridge will undoubtedly put extra pressure on the road network in Cosham but this is essential work.
‘Motorists should allow extra time for their journey and if they are only travelling through the area look to find alternate routes if possible.
‘We apologise for the inconvenience and are grateful for residents’ patience during this time.’
The old bridge on Northern Road was built in 1927 and is now reaching the end of its working life. Work to replace the bridge began in September and the project will see it close to general traffic for 20 weeks from 5am on Wednesday, 13 February.
Most traffic will be diverted via Western Road and Southampton Road. One narrow signal-controlled lane will allow buses, taxis, emergency vehicles and a very limited number of public service vehicles to use the bridge while the work is happening. Pedestrians can continue to use the bridge throughout the work while cyclists will be asked to dismount and walk across.