Big Programme Information

What is the Bournemouth International Growth Programme?

£45.2 million secured by Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership as part of the Dorset Growth Deal is funding a series of transport and infrastructure investments

The Bournemouth International Growth Programme is already tackling the issue of congested and inadequate road networks around the airport.

In May 2016, the major renewal of A338 Bournemouth Spur Road, the key link road to Bournemouth Airport finished on time and budget, and kick-started effective delivery of the programme.  

Since then, several transport schemes have already benefited from the BIG Programme investment including improvements to Chapel Gate roundabout, Blackwater Junction East and Hurn roundabout.

The BIG programme forms part of Dorset LEP's Strategic Economic Plan to drive economic growth, improve housing, transport and infrastructure, and create more highly skilled jobs.

A number of projects were considered to see which will deliver best value and keep driver disruption and impact on business to a minimum. 

A338 improvements at Blackwater consist of the following elements:

  • An extra lane from Blackwater towards Cooper Dean

The scheme has been designed to improve traffic merging around the Blackwater East junction, and increase traffic capacity south of Blackwater towards Cooper Dean to cope with ever increasing vehicle numbers. 

The work includes:

  • Creating an extra southbound lane on the section of the A338 between Blackwater Junction towards Cooper Dean roundabout
  • Improving the southbound ‘on slip’ to the A338 from the B3073 at Blackwater East Junction
  • Improving the northbound ‘off slip’ from the A338 on to the B3073 at Blackwater West Junction
  • Carrying out B3073 bridge protection works and widening the carriageway over the River Stour bridge including new parapets and safety fences

Improvements to the Blackwater Junction - East -Completed

There was often significant queuing at the existing Blackwater East Junction on the B3073. At peak times queuing also caused delays on the A338. Works have improved traffic flow and alleviated traffic congestion in the vicinity of Blackwater Junction, improving journey time reliability.

Works at the East Junction completed in May 2018.

Improvements to the Blackwater Junction - West - Completed

Construction of the West Junction was completed in Spring 2020.

View the Blackwater Junction plans here.


Travel information:

Some of these works will have an impact on travel in the area, so we have provided a range of options to obtain road and travel information:

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