Start refurbishment M25 Tunnel and Junction 25 UK
United Kingdom – The £75 million scheme to tackle congestion at M25 Junction 25 and improve the operation and maintenance of the M25 Holmesdale Tunnel will start on Saturday 6 May 2006 and is due to be completed by Christmas 2007.
To keep traffic delays to a minimum, work will be carried out 24 hours a day, seven days a week so that the whole scheme can be completed in around 18 months. The M25 motorway will remain open with two lanes running in each direction, with a contraflow and 40 mph speed limit for the safety of drivers and workers.
The scheme will upgrade the mechanical and electrical equipment installed in the Holmesdale tunnel to improve its operation and maintenance, and will increase the number of lanes on the eastbound (clockwise) M25 carriageway at Junction 25 from two to three.
Work will be carried out in five phases:
- Phase 1 – refurbishment of the central tunnel wall; two lanes of traffic running through each tunnel bore; 17 weeks.
- Phase 2 – complete refurbishment of the equipment in the eastbound (clockwise) tunnel bore and construction of a third lane; eastbound tunnel bore will be totally closed to traffic, with two lanes running in each direction in the westbound tunnel bore; 28 weeks.
- Phase 3 – complete refurbishment of the equipment in the westbound (anti-clockwise) tunnel bore; westbound tunnel bore will be totally closed to traffic, with two lanes running in each direction in the newly refurbished eastbound tunnel bore; 28 weeks.
- Phases 4 and 5 – finishing work to the central reservations and replacement of the safety barriers; two lanes of traffic running through each tunnel bore; 6 weeks.
The eastbound (clockwise) entry slip road and the westbound (anti-clockwise) exit slip road at Junction 25 will be closed during the whole of the 18-month scheme.
Highways Agency project manager Eamonn Colgan said: "Once completed the improvement at Junction 25 will reduce congestion and improve safety for drivers using the tunnel. The new mechanical and electrical equipment in the tunnel will reduce the number of unplanned maintenance closures currently required. "Drivers are advised to plan their journeys, and allow extra time if possible because there will be narrow lanes, a contraflow and a speed limit of 40mph through the works area for the safety of drivers and workers. Users of the M25 should remain on the motorway and follow the dedicated diversion routes if necessary. Please drive safely and obey the temporary 40mph speed limit signs."
- 1. The Highways Agency is an executive agency of the Department for Transport. It manages, maintains and improves the network of trunk roads and motorways in England on behalf of the Secretary of State.
- 2. The £75 million project will be carried out by Costain and supervised by Mouchel Parkman on behalf of the Highways Agency.
- 3. The Holmesdale Tunnel was opened in 1984. At Junction 25, the M25 motorway was designed with only two lanes for through traffic, causing congestion through the junction at peak times. M25 Junction 25 was identified as a junction that would benefit from improvement and was included in the 92 junction priority action sites announced in October 2002. The majority of the M25 carriageway in this area is dual three-lane carriageway.
- 4. The Highways Agency traffic information website is at www.highways.gov.uk/trafficinfo
- 5. For real-time traffic information, the Highways Agency 24-hour voice activated telephone service is on 08700 660 115. (Calls from BT landlines to 0870 numbers will cost no more than 8p per minute; mobile calls usually cost more)
- 6. For general information about the Highways Agency and its work, visit the Highways Agency website www.highways.gov.uk or telephone the Highways Agency information line on 08457 50 40 30. (Calls from BT landlines to 0845 numbers will cost no more than 4p per minute; mobile calls usually cost more. Service operates: 8am-8pm weekdays, 9am-5pm weekends.)
Safe driving at roadworks
During 2005, five road workers were killed and 12 seriously injured in the course of their work on Highways Agency roads. Drivers approaching roadworks are advised to:
- Keep within the speed limit – it is there for your safety
- Get into the correct lane in good time – don’t keep switching
- Concentrate on the road ahead, not the roadworks
- Be alert for works traffic leaving or entering roadworks
- Keep a safe distance – there could be queues in front
- Observe all signs – they are there to help you