Delays can be expected for motorists and residents in the Smithdown Road area over the next six weeks as substantial roadworks are carried out, leaving many facing long journey times.
The work, which started last Monday, is not scheduled to finish until early November and will see the road completely resurfaced. Residents and businesses have all been notified in advance by Liverpool City Council and Scottish Power, who are carrying out the maintenance, and commuters are already feeling the effects.
LJMU accountancy student Niall George told JMU Journalism: “It’s frustrating, I was late to class three times last week because buses were late. I might have to start walking in.”
Whilst the roadworks are ongoing Smithdown Road has been converted to just one lane in each direction.
Lloyd Derek, who has lived in the Smithdown area for 45 years, told JMU Journalism: “I’ve seen work down here before, like putting in new sewer pipes, but nothing this extensive.”
The city council is working in conjunction with the energy provider to deliver a brand new carriageway. Scottish Power, who donated £180,000 to the £500,000 scheme, will be installing cabling along the length of the road from Yanwath Street to Garmoyle Road in order to upgrade its supply to the area.
Mike Bruen, store manager at ASDA on Smithdown Road, said: “At the moment business is fine as the roadworks haven’t moved far enough down, but we do expect it to affect customers in the upcoming weeks.”
The start of the improvements comes immediately after the completion of the £2.2 million upgrade of Queens Drive. The council held off the start of the works until the Queens Drive scheme was completed, to avoid major disruption on two major routes in the city.
Liverpool City Council’s Cabinet Member for Transport, Cllr Tim Moore, said: “This is a great example of how, by working together with our partners in the private sector, we can achieve great things. Smithdown Road has needed these improvements for a number of years, and I’m delighted that we will now be able to deliver them.”
A statement on the council website says: “Liverpool is a city on the up and over the next few years you will see major improvements in a number of key areas across the city, as part of the City Centre Movement Strategy. During this time, certain roads will be affected by the works being carried out.”
Paul Newbrook, Senior Investment Engineer at Scottish Power, said: “The work we are carrying out will support growth and improve the security of electricity supplies in the area for many years to come.”