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Next phase of work on final section of growth boosting city bypass begins

Work on the final section of Lichfield’s southern bypass is progressing well and has moved on to another phase.

The new section of road will complete what will be an essential part of the city’s infrastructure and support the delivery of new housing and future growth. Work has now begun to build the spine road from Birmingham Road under the railway and through the housing development land to London Road.

The scheme will connect the A5127 Birmingham Road with the A5206 London Road using the new underpass beneath the Cross City railway line which is nearing completion.

The latest phase of works will also include building a retaining wall for a proposed new section of canal. This will enable the Lichfield and Hatherton Canals Restoration Trust to carry out this project at some point in the future. In addition, two new bridges will be constructed over the future path of the canal.

While the spine road is being constructed, Persimmon Homes will be building new houses in its development areas.  Once access below the new rail bridge is available, construction vehicles will enter and exit the site via Birmingham Road roundabout and vehicles working on the housing development will use the London Road entrance.

The new railway bridge and the connection to Birmingham Road roundabout are being funded by the Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership through the Government’s Local Growth Fund. The remaining 600 metre stretch is being funded by a developer. The bridge was put in place over the Christmas period.

The Department for Transport allocated £5m to the scheme, in addition to £2.3m from the Government’s Local Growth Fund through the Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership.

The road will link with the new housing development and new primary school in addition to easing congestion in the city centre and in particular around the railway station.

Chris Loughran, deputy chair of GBSLEP, said:

It is extremely important that we support our local communities in light of Covid-19, and this key infrastructure project will benefit residents and businesses within Lichfield significantly.

“The Lichfield southern bypass will transform the area by improving traffic flow to relieve congestion and boost connectivity. It also unlocks space for much-needed housing and improve access to new employment sites, attracting investment and creating new jobs.

“It will also enhance Lichfield’s reputation as a highly accessible tourism destination, further supporting the growth of the regional economy by enticing more visitors into the area.”

Staffordshire County Council’s deputy leader and cabinet member for economy and skills Philip White, added:

The final section of the Lichfield Southern Bypass is essential to the city’s future growth. It is enabling the delivery of much-needed new homes it will reduce congestion in the city centre.

“The phase of works to create the new road under rail bridge was a detailed engineering project which needed to take place over Christmas as the team needed to take temporary possession of this section of the railway.

“We’re pleased that work has been able to continue safely through the Covid-19 period to help strengthen our economy at a critical time as we move out of the pandemic.”