A major road improvement scheme to upgrade the busy Toneway Creech Castle junction in Taunton is set to be postponed until next year to support the economy as it recovers from the coronavirus pandemic.
Somerset County Council originally planned to begin work in April 2020 but this was temporarily paused due to the start of lockdown and uncertainty over materials, sub-contractors and key utilities work.
Now, following discussions with the business community, it is proposed to postpone the scheme for another 12-18 months. This is to help support the local economy during the recovery by minimising any temporary disruption on a key route into Taunton.
Councillor John Woodman, Somerset County Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways, has told Tone News
Although these improvements will provide long-term benefits to Taunton’s economy, it was always going to be a challenging scheme to deliver with no option but to close one of our main roads
Postponing is not an easy decision. We are absolutely committed to improving this key junction when the time is right and will be looking to reschedule this scheme at a later date when the situation is hopefully much improved.
Whilst this upgrade is needed to support wider growth in Taunton and Somerset these are difficult times for everyone and we want to support our business communities in our local economy wherever we can.
The Creech Castle scheme was due to be delivered by Alun Griffiths Ltd, who are currently continuing to work on the nearby M5 Junction 25 improvement scheme. Postponing the Creech Castle works has allowed the contractor to press on at Junction 25 during the lockdown period and works remain on schedule, despite the coronavirus disruption.
For further updates on Junction 25, and to sign up for email newsletters, please visit the Travel Somerset website.
The proposal to postpone the Creech Castle works will be considered by Somerset County Council’s Cabinet at its meeting on 17 June. Stay up to date with the Council’s highways teams by following @TravelSomerset on Twitter.