£16.5m Elmbridge transport scheme stalls

Major changes to help solve chronic traffic problems in Elmbridge have stalled.

Hundreds of motorists have been waiting eagerly for the £16.5million project to start this spring which would transform the congestion blackspot on the Golden Valley Bypass.

But it has been revealed the cost of the project given by the contractor signed up for the job has increased so much the local authority has pulled out and has gone back to the drawing board.

Gloucestershire County Council will now put the project out to tender.

It means it is accepting offers from new firms to take on the contract to complete the Elmbridge Transport Scheme, which was given permission back in November 2014.

Liz Keveren, director of Macron Store on Elmbridge Court Business Park said her customers regularly had ‘road rage’ from driving on the adjacent roundabout.

“This has been going on for years,” she said.

“We would love to see improvements there. There have been so many accidents, it’s horrendous.

“Of course we have customers coming and going and some have road rage after almost being hit by people on the roundabout.

“It needs to be done as quick as possible. It’s taking ages.”

The junction’s surface is in a poor state with deep potholes littering the road, considered to be one of the busiest in the county.

In addition priority bus measures are to be installed on the approach to Arle Court roundabout in Cheltenham.

Scott Tompkins, lead commissioner for highways at Gloucestershire County Council, said: “Only a few companies bid to carry out the Elmbridge works, so we’re looking for more bids to get the best deal for local taxpayers.

“Companies have until midday on Monday, April 25 to submit their bids.

“In the meantime, we’ve been working closely with Highways England, which owns the road, on the designs for the roundabout improvements.

“Work is expected to start in the summer school holidays, once the contract has been awarded.”