A14 widening project will begin on Monday

Work to widen the A14 between junction 7 (pictured) and 9 is set to begin on Monday

Work to widen the A14 between junction 7 (pictured) and 9 is set to begin on Monday

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A long-awaited project to widen the A14 near Kettering between junctions 7 and 9 is to begin on Monday, Highways Agency bosses say.

The £42 million scheme will add an extra lane in each direction to reduce congestion, improve journey time reliability and support economic growth.

The work means that from Monday, November 11, overnight lane closures will be in place from 8pm to 6am until Friday, December 20, to allow contractors to create the contraflow system.

The work will coincide with Network Rail’s closure of the A509 Pytchley road in Kettering from December 9.

A spokesman for the Highways Agency said: “This traffic management will create essential working space for construction workers to work in safety. Initial work includes installing CCTV and speed enforcement cameras throughout the scheme, with main earthworks due to start in the New Year.

“Between Saturday 7 and Monday 9 December some slip roads will be closed for a few hours each night. During these closures traffic will be diverted to the next junction where it can turn around and return on the opposite carriageway.

“A 24-hour 50mph speed limit will be in place throughout the construction phase and while traffic management is in place for the safety of road users and road workers.”

Cllr Michael Brown, from Kettering Council, said: “The Conservative administration alongside our local MP lobbied the Chancellor for the £120m required to ensure the A14 is fit for purpose over the coming 20 to 30 years.

“The A14 widening scheme is part of our Managed Growth Strategy.

“Kettering Borough is experiencing excellent housing and business growth and we must have the necessary infrastructure in place to cope with this. As daily users of the A14 ourselves, we understand that there will be some short term disruption, however this will yield long term local economic benefits.”

Roads Minister Robert Goodwill said: “The government is committed to delivering a road network fit for roads users and businesses of the 21 century. The start of works on the A14 scheme is an important economic step forward in keeping traffic moving around Kettering, as well as providing improved capacity for freight travelling to and from ports on the east coast.”

Highways Agency project manager Mike Hall said: “We are delighted to be starting work this month. Delays will be kept to a minimum with work being carried out overnight when traffic flows are lighter. The main earthworks are due to get underway in the New Year – it’s from this point that road users will start to see the widened A14 taking shape.”

The work to widen the A14 is due to be completed in spring 2015.

For more about the scheme visit www.highways.gov.uk/roads/road-projects/a14-junctions-7-9-kettering-bypass-improvement or phone 0300 123 5000.