£5million improvement project to ease traffic congestion on A17 around Sleaford says council

New roundabouts and improvements to existing key access points to Sleaford including Holdingham roundabout on the A17. EMN-190103-110955001
New roundabouts and improvements to existing key access points to Sleaford including Holdingham roundabout on the A17. EMN-190103-110955001
  • Additional lanes at each approach to Holdingham Roundabout
  • Traffic signals installed at Holdingham Roundabout on the A17 dual carriageway approach and the A15 western bypass approach
  • New lanes installed on all approaches to the A17/A153 junction
  • Traffic signals installed at the A17/A153 junction

Detailed proposals for improvements to Holdingham Roundabout and Sleaford Rugby Club junction on East Road have been announced for Sleaford.

It is said by the county council the nine-month, £5m improvement project will ease congestion and hopefully improve safety at Holdingham Roundabout and the Sleaford Rugby Club junction by increasing capacity and improving traffic flow in all directions.

The locations at Holdingham roundabout and East Road for the Sleaford highway improvement scheme. EMN-190103-110756001

The locations at Holdingham roundabout and East Road for the Sleaford highway improvement scheme. EMN-190103-110756001

Coun Richard Davies, Executive Member for Highways and Transport, said: “As it is now, traffic on both Holdingham Roundabout and at the Sleaford Rugby Club junction experience congestion at various times throughout the day, making it difficult for drivers to properly plan their journeys.

“As a result, we’ve carried out a number of traffic surveys looking into how we could ease some of that congestion as the number of vehicles on the road continues to grow each year.

“What we found was that a combination of adding new lanes and installing traffic signals is the most cost-effective and beneficial solution.”

As part of the works, the following improvements will be made:

* Additional lanes on all five approaches to Holdingham Roundabout, with an additional lane on the roundabout itself to improve flow capacity

* Traffic signals installed at Holdingham Roundabout on the A17 dual carriageway approach and the A15 western bypass approach. An additional set of traffic signals on the A15 would be needed by 2032 and work will be carried out in preparation for that.

* New lanes installed on all approaches to the A17/A153 junction to improve capacity

* Traffic signals installed at the A17/A153 junction

In a report to county councillors, officers explain: “The A17/A153 Rugby Club junction currently experiences lengthy queues on the A17 slip road during the AM peak, periodically queuing back onto the A17. This is the result of insufficient capacity at the junction. Right turn vehicle movements from the slip road onto the A153 do not have sufficient opportunity to exit the slip road, as a result, all left turn vehicle movements are restricted.

“Driver frustration ensues which has resulted in 14 reportable accidents during the last three years.”

They added that feasibility studies and traffic modelling has been carried out to test out the proposals and budget estimates were drawn up for each option.

As for calls for a roundabout at the rugby club junction, officers state: “Traffic modelling work has demonstrated that this (traffic lights and extra lanes) will prevent any queuing back onto the A17. Traffic signals will also

remove the potential for conflict at this location, thus reducing the potential for accidents.”

Coun Davies added: “Work on the rugby club junction is expected to start in April 2020 and is likely to last for three months. Once complete, we’ll move onto Holdingham Roundabout, with a view to completing the entire job by Christmas 2020.

“During this time, we’ll do our absolute best to minimise disruption, but road users should expect a mixture of lane closures, temporary traffic lights and overnight road closures to ensure a safe working area for the contractor.”

Ursula Lidbetter, chairman of the Greater Lincolnshire Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “The Sleaford Growth Project seeks to bring together a coherent package of projects over three distinct phases. A provisional growth deal allocation of £2m is in place to support this initial infrastructure phase of the project, which will enable over 2,000 new jobs and around 1,700 new homes.

“The Greater Lincolnshire LEP is pleased to be working with North Kesteven District Council to develop these improvements to the A15/A17 Holdingham Roundabout and the A17/A153 junction, providing access to Sleaford Enterprise Park. In addition to supporting significant growth for the area, the scheme will also address and futureproof key network capacity issues.”

Minister for Local Growth, Jake Berry MP, said of proposed investments on the A46 and in Sleaford: “We are committed to boosting economic growth across the Midlands Engine and the whole of the UK to build a country that works for everyone.

“This £4.5 million investment from the Local Growth Fund will greatly improve two important road junctions and enhance the flow of traffic at these key sites in Lincolnshire. These schemes will not only improve journeys for local residents and all those who use the roads of Greater Lincolnshire, they will also unlock up to 2,300 new homes in the area.”

Coun Richard Wright, Leader of NKDC, said: “We know that traffic at both Holdingham roundabout and Sleaford Rugby Club can be extremely busy and the much-needed improvements at both junctions will help to ease congestion as more homes and employment space are created in the town.

“As a District Council we are delighted at the success of the funding bid made to Greater Lincolnshire Local Enterprise Partnership which shows great confidence in the ability of the authority to deliver major infrastructure and capital projects, and are pleased to be working alongside Lincolnshire County Council in both schemes’ delivery.”

The proposed £5m scheme will be discussed at a meeting of the county council’s Highways and Transport Scrutiny Committee on Monday March 11, with final approval to be given by executive councillors at a later date.

When approved, the scheme will be funded by the Greater Lincolnshire Local Enterprise Partnership through a £2m Single Local Growth Fund grant, £250,000 from North Kesteven District Council, £2,549,500 from Lincolnshire County Council including Section 106 developer contributions and a £373,000 Integrated Transport Grant and Section 106 contributions.