Gloucestershire County Council to consider further M5 junction funding

Ashchurch Map

Gloucestershire County Council is considering spending £4.6m to complete the M5 Junction 9 and A46 (Ashchurch) Transport Scheme.

The £14m project, which is intended to remove significant volumes of traffic from the A46 through Ashchurch, received £8m in funding last year. A further £1.5m was announced by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities last month.

The project aims to improve journey times and reliability, helping to reduce mainline queueing on the M5 and the approaches to M5 junction 9 at peak periods due to congestion, which is currently a safety concern.

Meanwhile, the reduced traffic in Ashchurch will improve air quality and safety for residents, allowing more cycling and walking on quieter, better designed local roads which will encourage local economic growth.

Cllr David Gray, cabinet member for environment and planning said: “I will be recommending to cabinet that the county council continues to invest in the development of these nationally significant proposals so that the county can reap the many benefits.

“The scheme will boost the economy, enhance the environment, and improve the quality of life for people living and working around the A46 in Ashchurch.

“It will also help to meet local and national housing needs, improve road safety, encourage active travel and make it even more attractive to invest in Gloucestershire.”

Read more – £5 million more investment proposed for M5 junction 9 scheme

The A46 is a nationally significant route between the south west and the midlands, offering an important alternative to the A42/M42 for traffic travelling between the M1 and the M5.

The M5 and A46 through Ashchurch form part of National Highways network and they are supporting the county council’s development work. Although the county council is the current scheme sponsor, subject to approval of the OBC, National Highways would take on the Preferred Route Announcement (PRA) and delivery of the scheme. The transfer to National Highways and the PRA by government would be expected in the summer of 2024.

The proposed scheme is in the early stages of development and the exact location of the new road and details of the junction upgrade are yet to be decided. Technical work is currently underway with the aim of presenting a number of suitable route options for public consultation in autumn 2022.

Read more – Ecotricity brings M5 Eco Park back to the planning table