Work has officially begun on the construction phase of the Bullockstone Road Improvement Scheme in Kent.
The £8.9 million developer funded project will improve highway safety and enable several housing and employment sites proposed in Canterbury City Council’s local plan while reducing congestion through the centre of Herne village.
The improvements, together with the proposed spine road to be constructed as part of the development site at Strode Farm, will form the Herne Relief Road.
A ground-breaking ceremony took place on Thursday 29th September to mark the beginning of construction work. Preparatory works have been taking place since the start of August.
The scheme is due to be complete by August 2023.
Bullockstone Road will be widened with two new roundabout junctions created at the A291 Canterbury Road junction and at the northern end of the scheme to the north of Lower Herne Road to provide access to Lower Herne Village.
As well as the new junctions, Bullockstone Road will be widened with a 40mph speed limit and landscaping introduced to replace lost greenery. There will also be a shared footway/cycleway incorporated along the full length of the route.
KCC’s Deputy Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport, Dan Watkins, said: “The upgrades to Bullockstone Road will increase safety for drivers and provide a shared cycleway and footpath for residents travelling between Herne Bay and the Blean woods.
“The Herne Relief Road itself will help remove through-traffic from Herne, reducing congestion and improving air quality in the village.
“I’m pleased to see this project get underway, as it will reduce congestion on roads in Herne and Greenhill, while encouraging more people to make local journeys by foot or bicycle.
“Longer-term I hope we are able to expand on this and create an attractive walking and cycling route all the way from Herne Bay to Canterbury, to help people adopt healthier forms of transport and meet our environmental goals.