Balfour Beatty has been awarded a contract to widen the A1 Western bypass on behalf of the Highways Agency.
The company will start work this summer to widen around four miles of the bypass to three lanes in both directions. As well as adding more capacity on the A1, they will build a new 0.33 mile parallel link road, for north and south-bound traffic, between Lobley Hill and A184 Gateshead Quays junctions.
Roads Minister Robert Goodwill said: “Once completed in spring 2016 the £61 million A1 improvement to the Western bypass will not only increase capacity by widening the road north to Metro Centre junction and south to Coal House junction, but will also reduce congestion and help economic growth in the area.”
Chief executive officer of Balfour Beatty Construction Services UK, Nicholas Pollard, added: “Balfour Beatty is delighted with the award of the A1 Coal House to Metro Centre road improvement scheme. We are intensely committed to working hard to improve the local transport infrastructure to help support and boost the local economy.”
Locally, leader of Gateshead Council, Cllr Mick Henry, said: “The A1 Western Bypass has become Tyneside’s key artery. When complete, these improvements will increase capacity, improve road safety and reduce journey times. This will make a significant difference to the daily lives of many and provide a real boost to our region’s economy.”
In July, ahead of construction work starting, public exhibitions will be held to give people more information about the project and how they might be affected while this vital work is carried out. Dates and times will be announced in due course.