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'Hamburger' on the menu
IT CAN be a nightmare for commuters making their way to and from Basingstoke at peak times – but now plans are in motion to drastically alter one of the town’s busiest roundabouts.
Bosses at Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council are looking to secure Government funding to help pay for a £7million overhaul of the Black Dam Roundabout, which connects the A339 with the A30 and junction six of the M3 motorway.
It is hoped that by reducing traffic congestion, it will make the town – and in particular Basing View business park – a more attractive place to work.
Councillor Andrew Finney, Cabinet member for economic development, said: “It is a reasonably priced and achievable scheme.”
It is being suggested that a “Ham-burger Roundabout” be created, with a priority lane running through the centre of the roundabout for traffic wishing to travel to or from the motorway.
Drivers wishing to get on to the A30 in either direction would continue around the roundabout as usual. Transport chiefs hope this radical change will reduce congestion as the majority of traffic will have an easier run through the middle of the roundabout. Cllr Finney described it as a “ground level flyover”.
The council, through the Enterprise M3 local enterprise partnership, will bid for “pinch point” funding while also contributing cash of its own to deliver the improvements.
Cllr Finney added: “We have got a high degree of confidence that we can deliver the scheme within the time-scales. It will improve the traffic flows through the Black Dam Roundabout.
“The traffic that is coming up and around the ring road will have priority and therefore it will be easier for people to get off the M3 and on to the ring road towards areas like Basing View.”
Successful schemes will be notified in September 2012, and if approved, it is hoped the new-look roundabout could be in place by March 2015.
The borough council’s Cabinet this week agreed to release £500,000 from its community infrastructure reserve to help pay for the improvements, subject to Government funding being granted.