Highways England are improving the busy 6.5 mile stretch of the M20 between Junction 3 near West Malling and Junction 5 near Aylesford by upgrading it to an ‘all lane running’ (ALR) smart motorway.
Smart motorways reduce congestion and improve journey time reliability by making the hard shoulder available as a traffic lane, and use variable speed limits to smooth traffic flow. They also add much needed capacity to some of the most congested parts of our network and support economic growth.
This work will be carried out by Kier on behalf of Highways England.
When will works begin?
They have already conducted preparatory work, such as removing vegetation to allow us a clear and safe work space. Initial CCTV works will commence on 30 April 2018 which will be followed by the installation of narrow lanes on 6 June 2018 to allow a safe working space for our road workers. We use narrow lanes so that we can keep the same number of lanes open when we carry out improvement work, while also allowing additional space at the side of the motorway to provide a safer working environment.
How will this project affect traffic?
During construction, we will be maintaining three narrow lanes, at speeds of 50mph for safety.
Lane closures and full closures overnight will be necessary during construction. Full closures will take place between 10pm and 5am and will involve clearly signed diversions. All closures will be subject to change and weather dependent.
All closure information will be advertised on the Highways England project webpage http://roads.highways.gov.uk/projects/m20-junctions-3-to-5-smart-motorway/ and Traffic England http://www.trafficengland.com/ throughout the project.
How will this project affect me?
Construction will inevitably have some impact on the local community, businesses and road users, for example construction noise and vibration or increased traffic on diversion routes.
We will work closely with local authorities and local communities to identity any specific issues and implement measures to address them wherever possible.
The smart motorway design reduces the environmental impact of increasing capacity because additional land is not required, they are also 60% more cost effective compared to traditional widening schemes.
If you would like to know more about the scheme and talk to members of the Highways England and Constructor teams please come along to the following Public Information Exhibitions:
Monday April 30th 2018
3.00pm-8.00pm, Trottiscliffe Village Hall, ME19 5EB
Friday May 4th 2018
3.00pm-8.00pm, Aylesford Village Community Centre, ME20 7AU
Wednesday May 9th 2018
3.30pm-8.00pm, Larkfield Village Hall, ME20 6PU
Friday May 11th 2018
3.00pm-8.00pm, Addington Village Hall, ME19 5BQ
How long will the works take?
Construction work will start in May 2018 and the scheme is expected to be completed in March 2020.
How will this project benefit journeys?
On completion, the M20 junction 3 West Malling to junction 5 Aylesford will provide four running lanes, increasing capacity, improving journey time reliability and reducing congestion by smoothing traffic flows using variable speed limits.
If you have any questions about this project, please contact the project team M20.J3-5Smart@highwaysengland.co.uk alternatively you can write to Highways England as follows: M20 junction 3-5 Project Team, Highways England, 5 St Phillips Place, Colmore Row, Birmingham, B3 2PW.
You can also find further information about the smart motorway project on our website at http://roads.highways.gov.uk/projects/m20-junctions-3-to-5-smart-motorway/ where you can sign up for updates.