Major Gosport road is back open after works on bus route end

OPEN Traffic flowing along Wych Lane yesterday.  Pictures: Ian Hargreaves  (114492-3)
OPEN Traffic flowing along Wych Lane yesterday. Pictures: Ian Hargreaves (114492-3)
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MOTORISTS are enjoying an easier ride in and out of Gosport as a major road has reopened.

Wych Lane, in Bridgemary, has been shut since March for work on the controversial Bus Rapid Transit scheme (BRT).

People trying to get in and out of Gosport faced months of delays as the road, a main thoroughfare, was shut.

But with the road’s old railway bridge now gone and a new junction built, Wych Lane is back open to drivers.

Paul McDonald, 28, who lives in Wych Lane, said: ‘It has been quite awkward getting in and having to go all the way around Bridgemary just to get home.

‘It was quite an inconvenience but now it has opened I have noticed the difference.

‘It’s a nice open road now and it is much easier to get buses.

‘I’m looking forward to the scheme being opened whenever that is because it will make it easier to catch a bus and I’m trying not to use my car too much at the moment.’

Traffic was diverted through Gregson Avenue and Cunningham Drive to the A32 Fareham Road and bus diversions were put in place.

After the old railway bridge was demolished, the road surface was raised to form a new junction with the proposed bus route.

Gas and water mains also had to be moved along with telephone and electricity cables.

Councillor Mel Kendal, who is in charge of transport issues at Hampshire County Council, said: ‘I’m pleased the complicated works removing the old railway bridge over Wych Lane, the diversion of underground utility services and the new junction are all now complete, allowing the road to reopen.

‘Progress on the construction of the BRT Phase One is going well.’

The multi-million pound bus route going through Fareham and Gosport is expected to be finished by early next year.

Temporary shuttle bus services, which were put in place while the construction work was under way, have now been withdrawn.

The normal 85, 86 and 88 buses services will resume along their normal routes from January 2.

Matthew Kitchin, general manager for the First bus company, said: ‘Wych Lane was closed earlier this year to allow the council to complete roadworks supporting the BRT scheme.

‘With these works now coming to an end we are pleased to see the road being reopened and our services returned to operate along their normal routes.

‘This is good news for local people and will mean they are able to travel to and from Fareham and Gosport more easily from January.’