A49 link road on schedule and boosting the local economy
Work on the A49 link road is progressing well and on schedule, with the local community also benefiting from the major Wigan highways project.
Contractor Jones Bros Civil Engineering UK is close to completing two of the three new bridges, with beams scheduled to be lifted into place for the final structure, the widening of New Lion bridge, at the end of September.
In addition, the civil engineering company is carrying out earthworks in multiple sections along the route in preparation for installing drainage, kerbing and surfacing.
The family firm, appointed by Wigan Council, has also worked closely with the community surrounding the project to ensure the high-priority scheme provides benefits throughout the construction as well as once it’s finished.
Eryl Evans, contracts manager at Jones Bros, said: “The team have done a fantastic job to stick to the timeline of activity.
“The completion of the bridges at Scotmans canal and Poolstock Lane will allow us to move materials within the site itself and therefore significantly reduce site traffic on public roads.
“The temporary bridge at Smithy Brook will also be removed and replaced by a footway and cycle bridge as per the design, and the beams for the New Lion Bridge are planned to be lifted into place in September.
“We would like to take this opportunity to thank motorists, residents, and businesses for their cooperation so far, and we will keep them informed as we progress further.”
Yvonne Meakin, public liaison officer for Jones Bros, said: “We are well-known for our proactive approach to community engagement, which is a quality we brought to this scheme.
“We have engaged with a number of local primary schools to deliver health and safety presentations and interactive team bridge building activities and we recently worked with staff and pupils at Worsley Mesnes Primary School to produce themed construction hoarding displays, resulting in the school being awarded “Runners Up” in the national Ivor Goodsite competition.
“We’re also passionate about keeping the local community updated with the work, which is why we have hosted three community events for residents to attend to ask questions and meet members of the team.
“Creating local job opportunities and placements is also important to us. We’ve supported a number of career open days to promote Jones Bros’ apprenticeship and training opportunities with local colleges and providers, which has already resulted in three Wigan students being enrolled into our apprenticeship scheme.
“The local economy has also been boosted thanks to holding Meet the Buyer events in partnership with Wigan Council. To date, we have spent almost £2 million with businesses from across the borough to ensure that this is truly a local project.
“We’re working with K-Pipe, Midi Photography, Paul Blackledge Drilling and TCS Geotechnics Unit to name a few.”
Councillor David Molyneux, Leader of Wigan Council, said: “Jones Bros have demonstrated tremendous efficiency with this project, working in a timely manner to ensure the road is delivered without delay.
“We’re really happy with their level of engagement with residents and the wider community, which has instilled a sense of ownership and pride in the local area.
“The A49 link road is a key route for us and will make commuting into the borough for both leisure and work much easier, alleviating traffic on local roads.
“Improving connectivity in this way gives people better access to jobs and can encourage businesses to invest in the borough, which is another of our key priorities.”
The A49 link road will connect Warrington Road in Goose Green to Westwood Way, Chapel Lane junction and the town centre. The road passes over busy Poolstock Lane and aims to relieve congestion on the road.
The scheme, has been made possible through funding support from the Greater Manchester Combined Authority’s Growth Deal pot, which is managed by Transport for Greater Manchester.