Junction upgrade at Newcourt backed

A379

Posted on: 14 March 2016

A £2.68million upgrade of A379 Sandy Park Junction, Newcourt, Exeter, has been approved by Devon County Council’s (DCC) ruling cabinet.

The work will include the widening of Sandy Park Way and traffic lights. The upgrade is vital to cope with expected development in the area.

It is planned that the area of Newcourt – east of the railway line up to the motorway – will be the location of 8.3 hectares of employment land and approximately 400 new homes.

This will put increased pressure on the existing junction and on other routes, including the narrow section under the railway and the road serving the A376 via Old Rydon Lane.

The existing junction is currently used to access the land to the east of the railway, including Sandy Park rugby ground, and David Lloyd leisure centre.

Currently this junction has a ‘left-in, left-out’ traffic system.

However this was always intended as an interim solution which would require upgrading with more development in the local area.

The proposals are for a junction upgrade to transform this to a full movement, signalised junction which would allow right turns in and out of the site.

To provide capacity for the traffic, the Sandy Park Way will be widened to three lanes, two right turning lanes and one left.

An additional lane on the A379 westbound approach will also be built which will continue all the way to the existing Russell Way right turn lane.

The upgrade will remove U-turning traffic from M5 Junction 30 as well as reducing dangerous manoeuvres at the Newcourt Way and Russell Way junction.

Exeter City Council have confirmed £1,025,000 towards the scheme through their Community Infrastructure Levy, and the Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) have also agreed a £1m contribution from the Government’s Growth Deal 1*.

The remaining £655,000 will be funded from the DfT’s Local Transport Plan grant allocation.

Councillor Andrew Leadbetter, DCC’s Cabinet Member for Economy with a Councillor Andrew Leadbetterspecial responsibility for Exeter and the local member for St Loyes & Topsham, said:

“I welcome this project. It will also take pressure off traffic especially on rugby match days and hopefully avoid the need for motorists to use other less suitable routes.
“Keeping the existing arrangement was considered but given the additional development proposed in the area, the local highway network would be put under considerable pressure with no improvement.
“A roundabout was also considered but given the unbalanced flows across all three arms, this would struggle to work operationally. Signals also allow the queue to be controlled and any potential queueing back reduced.”

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