Staff, patients and visitors at Scarborough Hospital are set to benefit from a major junction improvement scheme which is about to get under way.
The proposed junction improvements affect two adjacent junctions; Scalby Road/Woodlands Drive and Scalby Road/Stepney Drive.
Contractors working for North Yorkshire County Council’s highways team will begin the work on Monday (1 June), lasting for ten weeks, with workers adhering to the social distancing guidelines set out by the Construction Leadership Council and government guidelines for carrying out works during the coronavirus pandemic.
It is the third of four major junctions in the £4m scheme aimed at easing congestion and improving safety for pedestrians.
Simon Morritt, Chief Executive of York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We recognise that these works are essential to accommodate the growth of Scarborough. They will also improve the capacity of the junction, making it easier for people travelling to and from the hospital by car, and improve the crossing facilities for people walking to and from the hospital.
“We have been in regular contact with North Yorkshire highways during the planning process and we welcome the works being done now, while visitor and patient numbers at the hospital are at the current low levels.”
Both junctions will have additional approach lanes created, with upgraded traffic signals at Woodlands Drive/Scalby Road. New traffic signals will be put in place at Scalby Road/Stepney Drive, and there will be a new pedestrian crossing point across Stepney Drive.
Woodlands Drive will be widened to lengthen the left and right turn lanes at the traffic signals, and the pedestrian crossing island will be improved.
Scalby Road northbound (from the town centre) will have an additional traffic lane, plus a new dedicated right hand turn lane for vehicles wishing to turn into Woodland Ravine.
On Stepney Drive, left and right hand turn lanes will be lengthened and a new staggered pedestrian crossing will also be installed as part of the new signals.
Both sets of signals will be linked and work together to provide a smooth flow of traffic through both junctions.
County Councillor Andrew Jenkinson, of the Woodlands division, said: “I’m fully expecting the results of this junction improvement to be as successful as the first two phases of the scheme. I’m looking forward to the work being completed and the benefits being enjoyed by the people of Scarborough.”
Councillor Liz Colling, representing Falsgrave and Stepney for North Yorkshire County Council and Scarborough Borough Council, added: “The workforce that will be carrying out these improvements also did the great work at the Sixth Form College roundabout recently. They proved themselves approachable and considerate. I’m in no doubt they will do an excellent job here too and we will soon see the benefits of the improved traffic flow for our residents, businesses and visitors.”
Working hours will be predominantly between 7am and 7.30pm weekdays only. Carriageway resurfacing works will be undertaken during weeknights between 7pm and 3am.
Stepney Drive between its junctions with A170 Stepney Road (6th form college) and Scalby Road will be closed between 15 June and 1 July. Traffic will be diverted via the mini roundabout at the Crown Tavern. Old Scalby Road will be closed at the end closest to Stepney Drive between 1 and 12 June.
A signed diversion route for vehicles will be in place whenever a road has to be closed to traffic. Access for pedestrians and deliveries will be maintained at all times.
Resurfacing of Scalby Road will be carried out between 7pm and 3am on various nights between 22 June and 24 July using temporary traffic lights. These will be staffed so that emergency services would be given priority if necessary. Work on Woodlands Drive will take place during the day, with reduced lane widths.
During works in the mouth of the ambulance access on Woodlands Drive, the access will be closed for two days and two nights, with ambulances routed to the main Woodands Drive hospital access.
When work is taking place on the Woodlands Drive car park exit, it will be restricted to half its width for two consecutive nights. During the day it will be restored to full width. Work is expected to take place between 24 and 27 July.
County Councillor Don Mackenzie, Executive Member for Access, said: “Unfortunately the effects of lockdown on our suppliers meant the works have been slightly delayed, but we have been working hard to identify the earliest possible practical start date in order to take advantage of the quiet road conditions.
“I’d like to reassure drivers that much of the work involves widening existing roads which can be done without disturbing traffic. Therefore disruption will be kept to a minimum and I would request your cooperation to help ensure an efficiently and safely executed project.”
In place of the planned face-to-face ‘meet the contractor’ session, the public are encouraged to email any questions they may have to firstname.lastname@example.org or write to the local highways office postal address North Yorkshire County Council, Whitby Highways Depot, Discovery Way, Whitby, YO22 4PZ or ring the County Council on 01609 780780.
The first two phases of the improvements have been completed on the Scalby Road/Manor Road junction, and the Stepney Road/Stepney Drive/Sandybed Lane junction.
Work on the final phase at Stepney Road/Falsgrave Road roundabout is scheduled for autumn 2020. All work is expected to be complete by spring 2021.
In their original layout, each junction was expected to reach capacity by the end of the Local Plan in 2032.
The County Council and Scarborough Borough Council are working in partnership on the scheme, contributing £150,000 each, with the bulk of the funding coming from the York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Local Enterprise Partnership, plus developer contributions.