The dream of a dual carriageway between the M6 and Preston city centre inches closer

Parts of the A582 are two lanes each way on the approach to junctions, but much of it remains single carriageway
Parts of the A582 are two lanes each way on the approach to junctions, but much of it remains single carriageway
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The land needed to create a new dual carriageway between South Ribble and Preston city centre will be compulsorily purchased - if its current owners do not agree to sell.

Lancashire County Council’s cabinet gave the green light for the legal process so that the scheme to widen the A582 is not delayed at a later date.

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The so-called South Ribble Western Distributor Road will see all single-lane sections of the route turned into a dual carriageway in both directions between the M6/M65 junction at Cuerden and the Broad Oak roundabout in Penwortham. The remainder of the route in and out of Preston city centre is already dualed.

Cabinet member for transport, Keith Iddon, said that negotiations were ongoing to come to an “amicable arrangement” with landowners.

But he added: “It’s very simple - we are going to build the road and it’s going through that land.”

Objections to any compulsory purchase orders would mean that they would have to be considered by a planning inspector. No buildings will need to be demolished to enable the scheme to go ahead.

The new road is designed to relieve congestion in built-up areas currently used by vehicles heading between the motorway network and Preston city centre - and relieve rush-hour congestion in the city itself. It will also improve access to the planned employment development at Cuerden and proposed housing estate at Pickering’s Farm.

As part of the project, a three-metre-wide shared and cycle path and footway will be created along the entire length of the A582, which will join up with other cycle routes.

Papers presented to cabinet reveal the scale of the four-mile scheme, which will require two new railway brides to be constructed - one to carry the widened route over the West Coast Mainline and another to take the Preston to Ormskirk line across the new road.

No price tag has been put on the overall plan, but it is to be delivered as part of the Preston and South Ribble city deal, which aims to create tens of thousands of new homes and jobs - and the necessary infrastructure to go with it.

However, additional funding is expected to be required and the project is earmarked for a share of a £700m bid made by Transport for North to the government’s National Roads Fund - should the broader application be successful.

EXACTLY WHERE IS BEING WIDENED?

A582 east-west for 1.4 miles along Farington Road and Flensburg Way - from the roundabout connecting Stanifield Lane and Lostock Lane to the 'tank roundabout’, close to the Farington waste recycling centre. New signal-controlled junctions will be introduced at Sherdley Road, Croston Road and the Lancashire Business Park.

A582 north-south for 1.8 miles along Penwortham Way and Golden Way, between the 'tank roundabout’ and Broad Oak roundabout (at the Brown Hare pub), where it will join with the dual carriageways of Golden Way and the Penwortham Bypass, which opens next month.

B5253 Flensburg Way north-south for 0.8 miles between the 'tank roundabout’ and the roundabout connecting Longmeanygate, Comet Road and Schleswig Way, which will be upgraded to a signal-controlled junction.