Apology from Milford Mill Road works developers

Closure on Milford Mill Road Salisbury 3 - June 8 2018

Published by Faye Tryhorn at 12:52pm 14th June 2018

The company behind the over-running roadworks there have been explaining more about the reasons for delays.

The developers behind the over-running Milford Mill Road works in Salisbury have confirmed that they expect the road to be re-opened by the 29th June.

Life Property has been facing pressure over the delays to the roadworks which has already left the area closed for 10 weeks.

They're putting in traffic calming measures around the railway bridge and utilities for the new Premier Inn and McDonalds being built on the corner of Southampton Road.

But there's been criticism of the speed and frequency of the works being done on site, with one local businessman, Mark Hotson from A World of Furniture, describing them as the 'ghost works'.

A statement's now been released by Life Property explaining more about the setbacks:

"Whilst the Developer and Contractor were aware of the presence of a medium pressure gas main to the side of the road, but outside the scope of works, during the excavation of the road the exact location was identified to be significantly closer to the original carriageway than detailed on surveys and records. As a medium pressure gas main from Southampton, all activity along the length of the works was stopped due to significant health and safety risks.

This resulted in a delay to the works to allow redesign and alignment of the road improvements including adjusting of the levels of the carriageway and the revised works required agreement of gas board and Wiltshire Highways before restarting. This redesign significantly increased the scope of works and therefore the time required and also impacted on an overhead BT supply restraint that needed to be relocated, which has now been completed."

WHAT'S BEEN DONE SO FAR?

There have been concerns about the lack of progress at Milford Mill Road, with pictures sent to Spire FM News showing large areas of the road dug up, with no sign of any staff:

 

Closure on Milford Mill Road Salisbury 1 - June 8 2018

 

Life Property also given us an update on their work on site:

"Currently, the improvements are significantly progressed, excavations completed, installation of new drainage completed, installation of new kerbs (save for a small section around the BT restraint), laying of BT and electrical ducts and supplies to new traffic lights are completed, and finally the infill of tarmac to build up levels will be undertaken as a continuous operation during the course of next week.

Siemens, the provider of the traffic lights, the last operation, require one week to complete the signals installation at the end of the programme. The completion of the works is expected to take no longer than two and a half weeks and the road is expected to be re-opened for 29th June."

There's also an apology from them about the delays to the works: 

"The Developer and Contractor recognise and apologise for the inconvenience and frustration that this brings to the local and city residents and businesses and would like to assure all parties that everything is being done to expedite the works as quickly as possible. The Developer and Contractor continue to work with Wiltshire Highways to keep them fully appraised of progress and would ask that that all parties remain patient whilst the works continue and are completed to provide these improvements for Milford Mill Road."

REACTION FROM CITY'S MP:

The closure has been causing major traffic jams in Salisbury, in particular at the College Roundabout, causing tailbacks towards the Alderbury bypass at peak times during the morning and evening rush hours.

Salisbury's MP John Glen has been keeping up to date with the roadworks and their progress, and he's now written a letter to Mark Hotson to explain his thoughts:

"As a regular user of Southampton Road, particularly when visiting constituents and businesses in the south-east of the constituency, I have been very frustrated by the extremely slow progress. We need to see improvements in the Southampton Road area - including College Roundabout - which result in tangible benefits for people travelling to Salisbury from the direction of Southampton, and for more local residents seeking to access businesses in the vicinity.

"There are two issues in play here - the short-term problems on Milford Mill Road, and the long-term issues relating to Southampton Road. I am reliably assured by the contractors - via Parvis - that the Milford Mill Road problems and delays have been caused by a series of unexpected discoveries as a result of the gas main being in a different position to where they had appeared on a survey, and further delays due to some issues with BT connectivity.

"On the more long-term issues relating to Southampton Road, I have been campaigning heavily, putting pressure on the Department for Transport, Highways England and Wiltshire Council to prioritise this for funding. Highways England have been undertaking a lengthy study looking at what options are available to us. There are a whole range of changes and options that could be enacted - including dualling the road or redesigning College roundabout - but this all needs to be properly assessed, including a robust cost-benefit analysis undertaken."

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