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Mon December 09 2019

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Transport for the North pitches for Rocket Junction funding

15 Aug Transport for the North has submitted a bid to the Department for Transport for support for a £700m programme of road works identified as ‘critical’ to the economic growth of the north of England.

Rocket Junction (© Liverpool City Council)
Rocket Junction (© Liverpool City Council)

Among the proposed project is a £120m redesign of Liverpool’s Rocket Junction at the western end of the M62 motorway.

The Rocket Junction is the busiest in Liverpool city region and connects the start of the M62, with the A5080 and the A5058 Queens Drive. The draft proposals include demolition of the existing Queens Drive Flyover and replacing it with a roundabout and dual lane underpass.

As well as the removal of the flyovers, the existing signalised junction will be reconfigured to incorporate a traffic signal controlled gyratory with provision for through traffic travelling north/south on Queens Drive, in a ‘hamburger’ type layout, where the main road passes through the centre of the roundabout.

The bid to the Department for Transport is for £92m with Liverpool City Council contributing the remainder. If approved, it is hoped that works for the scheme could begin in 2023.

Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson said: “The Rocket is not fit for purpose – it can no longer cope with the traffic coming into the city via the M62 and as welcome to Liverpool is a hugely negative experience.

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“As we all know, the junction is flawed as the motorway should have come all the way to the edge of the city centre but stopped at the Queens Drive ring road instead.

“In its current state the Rocket junction is causing commuter misery every single day and by its flawed design is causing congestion and contributing to greater air pollution.

“We need the M62 to work for Liverpool and the wider city region – for our economy and our environment. This scheme needs a huge amount of development and consultation to get it to the stage of delivering it but if the government is serious about investing in the Northern Powerhouse, this is a scheme that will certainly unleash huge benefits for all concerned be they commuters, businesses, residents and visitors to our city.”

Peter Molyneux, major roads director at Transport for the North, said: “As part of our pan-northern bid for £700m of investment in our roads, we’re pleased to put forward for funding the upgrade scheme for the Rocket Junction, working in partnership with Liverpool City Council.

“As the busiest junction in Liverpool, with more than 100,000 vehicles travelling through it each day, this is a pivotal project that will have wide-reaching benefits for people and businesses.”

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