A BUSY town centre junction will be changed to improve traffic flow in the area.

Work on the route revision at the Whalebridge junction near Jury's Inn will begin next Monday and be completed by Swindon-based company Lake Edge Ltd in August.

While this is being carried out, Corporation Street will have to be closed between 7.30am and 6pm on Monday July 25, Tuesday July 26 and Wednesday July 27 so that the contractors can safely remove the large triangular traffic island. 

A diversion route will be in place directing traffic along Fleming Way to the Magic Roundabout, along County Road and along Manchester Road, and vice versa.

Currently, vehicles travelling south from Manchester Road towards Fleming Way can only turn left towards the mini roundabout near Halfords.

But once these roadworks have been finished, drivers will be able to turn left and go straight ahead, towards Princes Street, on the approach from Corporation Street.

A second, larger phase of work will be completed at the Whalebridge junction next year as part of the £33 million Fleming Way bus boulevard scheme.

This phase will include widening the western side of Corporation Street into the Kimmerfields regeneration site, introducing new cycle lane facilities which link Fleming Way to the Eastern Flyer route, and building access roads into the new Kimmerfields development.

The Fleming Way bus boulevard is part of a £100m investment programme being led by Swindon Borough Council which aims to create a new welcoming gateway into the town centre by building a new bus interchange and improved public open spaces as well as introducing new cycle lane facilities which link up the main cycling routes across the town.

It is hoped that this project will stimulate further investment in the town centre by increasing land values and making it more attractive for investors to bring forward retail, residential, office-based or leisure facilities.

The new version of Fleming Way will see the road closed to regular traffic, with priority given to buses, cyclists and pedestrians.

Councillor Gary Sumner is cabinet member for strategic infrastructure, transport and planning.

He said: “This first phase of the Whalebridge junction improvement works is an important first step in our plans to breathe new life into Swindon town centre and have been carefully sequenced so they take place before we close Fleming Way in September.

“We were always going to remodel Whalebridge junction to help bring forward development at the adjacent Kimmerfields regeneration site, so it made absolute sense to remove the ‘left turn only’ configuration at the same time to make it easier for motorists to go straight on to access Princes Street.

“There will be some inconvenience to motorists when we close Corporation Street for a few days later this month, but I believe the end result will be welcomed by both motorists and local residents who regularly use the junction.”

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