New £70 million route into Sunderland city centre in its final stages - with roadworks in store before it's finished
Motorists will face diversions and restrictions before work on a £70 million route is finally finished.
Sunderland City Council has said drivers city centre access from the Northern Spire Bridge will be impacted by works over the summer as final links for the new dual-carriageway are completed.
The 2.5km – 1.5 mile – route of the Sunderland Strategic Transport Corridor (SSTC) 3 project is due to open, with September earmarked for its launch.
It links the southern end of the Northern Spire through the former Pallion Shipyard, underneath the Queen Alexandra Bridge, through Deptford Terrace and onto Riverside Sunderland and the city centre.
The programme of works over the summer for linking the Spire and new highway at the junction of Forster's Printworks, includes more earthworks, drainage, ducting, kerbing, and surfacing.
Pallion's Woodbine Terrace is being closed from Tuesday, June 1, as these final stages are completed.
The council has said drivers accessing the city centre from the A19/A1231 should continue to the Wearmouth Bridge.
Drivers accessing Pallion and its retail park can use the Northern Spire and the diversion route of Paul Watson Way.
The new dual-carriageway is a key part of the council's ongoing works for a "more dynamic, healthy and vibrant Sunderland” as the route improves city connectivity and opens up new development opportunities.
Leader of Sunderland City Council, Councillor Graeme Miller said: "We're into the last lap now on this major civil engineering project - completing the links between the Northern Spire and the new highway.
"I'd like to thank everyone across the city for their patience and understanding while we've been completing this hugely important project."
Since the SSTC dual-carriageway works started in spring 2019, there have been major landscaping, excavation and construction works that have built 1.5kms – nearly a mile or 4,900ft – of retaining wall sections for the new highway.
The £70 million budget has included a contribution of £40 million from the Department for Transport.
Coun Miller added: "The new route is very much part of the bigger picture as we unlock even more of our city's potential, open up new development opportunities, build more homes and continuing making Sunderland a city for the 21st century."