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New M55 and Preston Western Distributor junction aerial pictures

Posted on - 7th November, 2022 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - Photos, Preston Council, Preston News, Roads, Transport
The new motorway junction is being constructed between Swillbrook and Higher Bartle
The new motorway junction is being constructed between Swillbrook and Higher Bartle

Latest pictures reveal a new M55 junction is falling into place as part of the wider Preston Western Distributor Road project, scheduled to open in spring 2023.

Works to build the new ‘missing’ junction 2 along the M55 motorway began in 2019.

The latest aerial pictures show the four junction slip roads and two roundabouts taking shape – all linked by a new bridge over the motorway.

The new road, to the west of Preston, will link the M55 to a new junction with Blackpool Road at Lea. The new motorway junction is being constructed between Swillbrook and Higher Bartle.

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Lancashire County Council and main contractor Costain are delivering the PWDR scheme and are building the new junction for National Highways.

Brian Smith, senior project manager for National Highways, said: “It’s starting to look like a proper motorway junction now and it’s on course to be completed and open to drivers next spring – supporting the local economy and relieving congestion at other junctions along the motorway.”

The £207m Preston Western Distributor scheme is the biggest new road programme funded in the Preston, South Ribble and Lancashire City Deal.

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As part of special ‘designated’ funds to support the generation of new jobs and building of new homes, National Highways, which operates the M55, is also contributing £25 million.

Lancashire Enterprise Partnership is also supporting the project supported with £58m from its Lancashire Growth Deal programme.

County Councillor Aidy Riggott, cabinet member for economic development and growth at Lancashire County Council, said: “The Preston Western Distributor is ten years in the making, and is much more than your average road scheme.

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“Not only will it improve connectivity across the county, but it will open up new housing sites and create more development opportunities, boosting Lancashire’s inward investment potential.

“Access to the M55 motorway and the wider national motorway network will be vastly improved, and the scheme will also help to relieve congestion on the existing road network.

“Our teams have made unbelievable progress since construction begin in 2019 and are now focused on making sure this major scheme is ready to be opened up to the public next spring.”

More information, including details of the motorway closure diversion routes is available on the PWD webpage.

Read more: See the latest Preston news and headlines

What do you think of the ‘missing’ junction 2? Let us know in the comments below.

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