Road provides welcome relief

Roads in Rugby are experiencing the positive impact of the Western Relief Road one year on from its opening.

A study commissioned by Warwickshire County Council to gauge the affect of the new road exactly a year after it was opened on 10 September 2010 has revealed that up to 79 per cent traffic has been alleviated from local roads.

The Western Relief Road itself has seen a 30 per cent increase of vehicles in the past year as motorists adjust travel patterns to take advantage of the 3.75 mile road which runs between Potford’s Dam and Avon Mill.

The knock on effect is that traffic on Bilton Lane has dropped by 79 per cent, the A4071 Main Street in Bilton is down 28 per cent, the number of vehicles using the A426 Newbold Road has fallen by 26 per cent, and the A428 at Church Lawford is down 14 per cent.

Cllr Peter Butlin, Warwickshire County Council’s Portfolio Holder for Highways and Transport, said: “These figures are proof that the Western Relief Road is achieving everything we expected and Rugby is seeing the benefit of it. The road has taken traffic away from traditional hot spots and we have had a lot of positive feedback from motorists and residents in the year since it opened.

“The new road has made journey times significantly quicker and helped to mitigate potential environmental impact by reducing noise and air pollution within the town centre. It has also responsible for creating better conditions for pedestrians, cyclists and other highway users.

“It is also worth noting the economic benefits of the Western Relief Road. By using the Government’s cost-benefit ratio calculation, for every £1 spent, the road is bringing £4.50 of benefit to Rugby’s economy.”

The study was carried out over in September 2011 and counted an average 24 hour weekday two-way traffic flow.

The Western Relief Road is 3.75 miles (6 kilometres) miles long and was built to relieve traffic congestion in and around the town caused by increased residential and industrial development. The multi-million pound scheme was constructed by Carillion and funded by the Department for Transport, Warwickshire County Council and developers.