£7 million safety upgrade for M53 in Cheshire

A £7 million programme of safety improvements along a section of the M53 between Ellesmere Port and Stoak in Cheshire will start this week.

National Highways is replacing large sections of ageing steel safety barriers in both the northbound and southbound verges and central reservation between junction 9 and junction 11 of the motorway. A major feature of the improvements involves replacing some of the steel barriers in the central reservation with a concrete barrier. 

These provide improved safety for motorway users and require less maintenance – meaning less disruption for drivers. The ten-month project will start on Friday (24 November) and is expected to be completed next August.

Planning for the work has been done in consideration of shoppers heading to and from the Cheshire Oaks complex with plans to remove traffic management for the forthcoming Christmas and New Year holiday period. 

National Highways project manager Ross Hepburn said: “This is an important project to improve safety along this busy section of the M53 by replacing ageing steel barriers with brand new steel barriers and – where favourable ground conditions and foundations allow – sections of concrete safety barrier. “We’ll be working around the clock but doing all we can to minimise inconvenience to motorway users including working in short sections along the carriageway where possible so drivers aren’t met with miles and miles of traffic management.

The new barriers will be installed along the northbound and southbound carriageways first before moving into the central reservation.  Drainage repairs will also be taking place to make the best use of the traffic management and minimise inconvenience to drivers.

Traffic management will include narrowed lanes, a 50mph speed limit and – until mid-December – a lane closure on the link road from the southbound M53 to the eastbound M56 at Stoak Interchange. 


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