Only smart motorway and 'essential' roadworks in Hampshire to continue

WORK to create smart motorways in Hampshire will continue but all 'non-essential' roadworks across the county have been put on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Friday, 3rd April 2020, 4:02 pm
Updated Sunday, 5th April 2020, 12:13 pm
Work to turn the M27 into a smart motorway will continue

Highway bosses have confirmed that multimillion-pound work to turn part of the M27, between J4 and J11, and part of the M3 between J 9 and J14 and into a smart motorway is ongoing.

Meanwhile, Hampshire County Council and Portsmouth City Council have suspended all non-essential construction and maintenance work.

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Highways England, which is responsible for smart motorways, said measures to stop the spread of Covid-19 have been taken. But it warned that the situation may change depending on government’s instructions.In a statement it said: 'Roadworks affect all journeys which is why it is important they are completed as quickly as possible.

'Our roads remain open and we will continue to maintain the network, ensuring that life-saving medicine, equipment, supplies and healthcare staff can travel to where they are needed most.

'All our sites have strict safeguarding measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19 and none of our sites are open to the public.'

Meanwhile the county council’s decision means that schemes such as the Botley and Stubbington bypass have been put on hold.

And in Portsmouth the council's highway contractor Colas has confirmed only key maintenance and emergency works will continue,

Councillor Lynne Stagg, the council's traffic boss, said: 'Essential maintenance and emergency work on our roads plays a vital role in making sure emergency vehicles, deliveries and key workers can get around the city.

'The teams are following the government social distancing guidance and in support of this anyone passing roadworks should do the same. Keeping our roads safe is essential.'

As a result all planned highways works in the city have been suspended and a reduced programme for road sweepers is in place to continue the essential work of keeping gutters clear on roads.

Some utility works in Portsmouth will continue such as emergencies or important works in line with government guidance. For example, the waste pipe work on the Eastern Road by Southern Water that is currently under way.

Residents are advised to check checking their local authority's website for updates.