Preparation work begins for eagerly awaited Kings' Dyke Level Crossing bypass between Peterborough and Whittlesey
Preparatory work for the long delayed King's Dyke Level Crossing bypass starts this week with the relocation of high voltage underground electricity cables.
The activity is taking place before construction begins on the bypass in late February 2019.
The new road and bridge is expected to open in December 2020.
Cambridgeshire County Council has now completed all necessary land acquisitions ahead of works by contractors Kier.
Motorists will not see much of the preparatory work, but fencing will be going up next week in preparation for UK Power Networks to move a second cable in the New Year.
Archaeological trench digging by Kier will also begin next Monday, which will determine the location, age, condition and significance of any archaeological remains that could be uncovered by the road scheme.
These first steps to enable construction to begin for the improvements to the A605 at King’s Dyke follows the approval of more than £16 million of additional funding required for the scheme by the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority at its Executive Board meeting in October.
The project is now set to cost around £30 million and finish three years behind schedule.
Cllr Steve Count, Leader of Cambridgeshire County Council, said: “This major scheme for a new road and bridge over the railway will help to bring significant economic benefits to the area, and it’s fantastic that we’re now at the stage where the project can progress to the construction phase.
“The existing level crossing and its barriers have caused significant delays to traffic travelling between Whittlesey and Peterborough for years, and future plans to increase trains along the route would only further worsen these delays.
“The new road will bypass the existing level crossing meaning traffic won’t have to stop when it closes, as well as providing a way to manage the predicted increase in vehicle numbers that are anticipated with planned local growth.”
Cllr David Connor, chairman of the Kings Dyke Project Board and member for Whittlesey South, said: “Along with Cllr Ralph Butcher, Cllr Martin Curtis and Cllr Chris Boden, I have been campaigning for this important scheme to go ahead for many years.
“Between us we’ve been involved in many meetings and I am very pleased that we are now in a position to be going ahead and look forward to the economic prosperity this project will bring to the local area.
“Cambridgeshire County Council, working with the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority, is committed to making these much needed improvements to the A605 to benefit local residents and commuters.
“They will be especially beneficial in bad weather when North Bank floods, easing congestion and reducing travel time between Whittlesey and Peterborough.”