A338 Info

Information for road users

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What's happening? Information for road users:

The southbound slip road onto the A338 at Blackwater Junction is being extended and a third lane is being added to the stretch of road on the A338 from Blackwater towards Cooper Dean.

During these improvement works please expect delays, particularly during rush hour. Please consider any alternative options for your journey:

  • Could you car share? More people sharing cars means fewer traffic on the road and less congestion. Find someone to car share with.
  • Could you work from home? Please talk to your employer to find out if there are any opportunities for home-working
  • Could you use public transport? 
  • Allow plenty of extra time. If you are unable to make changes to your journey please make sure to leave as much extra time as you can to account for the delays, particularly during rush hour.

Monday 1 October until Spring 2019 

(excluding 10 December 2018 - 6 January 2019)

The A338 remains open and useable throughout this period, with some lane restrictions. A338 Southbound from north of Blackwater towards Cooper Dean will be down to a single lane southbound. The lane closure from 1 October will be 24 hours, so do expect delays, especially at peak times and plan accordingly.

We apologise for any inconvenience whilst these essential highway upgrades take place.

What are we actually doing?

Phase 1: Works start

Works in the centre reservation with southbound lane 2 closed and northbound running two narrowed lanes. Both will have 40mph speed restriction. Daytime work will involve bridge works to join together the two bridges that carry the road over the River Stour, and make extensive repairs to these bridges. Night time work will mainly be earthworks to widen the southbound carriageway into the central reservation.

Phase 2: Mid-November

Bridge pier protection work will start – this will incorporate the existing bridge piers into a concrete protection barrier and allow for the slip road to be extended under the bridge (along with widening into central reservation).

Widening works in the verge will also start, this requires a new, large, earth retaining wall to be built to allow widening of the verge for a whole extra lane of 3.50m.

Due to work at the bridge, the lane closure will be extended back up to Avon Causeway bridge.

There is clear guidance from the Department for Transport on traffic management layout to ensure the safety of everyone on the road and these ‘Chapter 8’ are being followed to determine the length of our works area, and subsequent taper into a single lane.

Drivers will be asked to get in lane early – one for Blackwater turnoff, one to go into Bournemouth. Please allow drivers to merge in turn at the Blackwater on-slip.

10 December: Christmas break

Back to four lanes but with 40mph restriction

6 January: Work returns

One lane open southbound for widening work and bridge works

Phase 3: end of March 2019

Lane restrictions move to northbound lane for widening work to start on northbound carriageway, along with bridge pier protection and bridge repairs.

Completion: June 2019 


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