Smart Motorway Underway On M1

Civil engineering consultants and others in the industry have come together to help build a new smart motorway on the M1 between junction 19 in Leicestershire and junction 16 in Northamptonshire.

The scheme will see drivers be able to take advantage of extra capacity after the hard shoulder is permanently converted to a traffic lane.

Highways England will be working towards delivering £11 billion of government funding between now and the year 2020, which includes completing on 286 miles of smart motorways in a bid to improve journey times, maintain safety standards and tackle congestion.

Expect closures on the road both north and southbound, with temporary traffic management in place overnight, when the work will be taking place.

“This is an exciting scheme and once completed will bring big improvements with an additional lane for traffic. This will help hugely during times of congestion. We are committed to delivering this work differently with shorter lengths of traffic management wherever possible to help minimise disruption to drivers,” Lee Wise, Highways England project manager, said.

Work has just been completed on a section of the M1 near Wakefield, with drivers now able to use the extra lane. However, a 50mph speed limit will remain while technology is tested by Highways England. It’s thought that testing will take around a week to complete, with the new motorway then set to open by February 1st. The technology due to be installed will provide up to date traffic information to motorists and ensure they use variable speed limits, which will be displayed on overhead message signs.