A 12-mile bypass to the south of Huntingdon in Cambridgeshire – part of the UK’s biggest road upgrade – will open to traffic on Monday 9 December.
The new bypass will run between Ellington and Swavesey and is part of a £1.5 billion project to upgrade 21 miles of the A14 between Cambridge and Huntingdon.
Last month, the Government announced that the bypass would open to traffic in December, a full year ahead of schedule. Now Highways England is setting out how the road layout will change, and what drivers can expect on the new road.
Highways England project director David Bray said:
"Opening the Huntingdon Southern Bypass is a huge achievement in the delivery of this major road upgrade and I’d like to thank road users, residents and stakeholders for their patience and support during construction.
Opening the new bypass will start to unlock many of the project’s benefits and, together with the upgraded section of the A1 between Alconbury and Buckden which opened earlier this year, means that the western section of the transformed A14 is essentially complete.
Like any new road, it will take some time for drivers to get used to driving on it, especially when the junctions have a new layout, and some have been renumbered. Please drive safely and enjoy the new road."
From 9th December, when the new bypass opens to traffic, drivers travelling eastbound on the new bypass will still have to join a section of 40mph narrow lanes roadworks from the Swavesey junction, so should look out for the signs when they approach the area.
The new A14 was designed with safety as the number one priority and its design is simple and intuitive. Variable mandatory speed limits will help to manage traffic to reduce congestion and ensure safety. As with any major road, the main things to remember are to keep left unless overtaking, not to drive under a red X, stick within the speed limit and know what to do if you breakdown. A red circular disc around a speed limit means that it is mandatory.
Slow-moving vehicles will be prohibited from the new bypass and will be directed to use alternative local access roads. Each junction has specific possible vehicle movements and it is not always possible to join or leave the new road in all directions – to ensure that A14 traffic uses the most appropriate junction for its destination – avoiding smaller roads through local communities.
The junction numbers on the A14 between Ellington and Bar Hill will change when the bypass opens, as there will be fewer junctions than on the old A14. New A14 junction numbers will be as follows:
- New Ellington → junction 21
- Brampton interchange → junction 22
- Godmanchester and A1198 → junction 23
- Swavesey → junction 24
- Bar Hill → junction 25
All A14 junctions East of and including Girton – as well as the A1 junctions – will maintain their existing junction numbers.
Work on the rest of the project, between Swavesey and Milton, continues and is on schedule to be completed as planned by December 2020.