Work on a new “Northern Gateway” which it’s hoped will improve traffic in and out of Sunderland is due to start next week, council bosses have said.
The scheme will see North Bridge Street and Dame Dorothy Street become two-way for all traffic.
The first work will involve setting up site compounds and accommodation, with traffic management in place from Monday, February 12, to allow road widening works and footpath improvements to begin.
Works have been programmed in stages and will take a break for July’s Tall Ships Event and Sunderland International Airshow.
Councillor Michael Mordey, the city council’s portfolio holder for City Services, said: “This council is committed to improving our city’s road and transport network.
“In recent years the council has completed major works at St Mary’s Boulevard, the Wheatsheaf Junction and, of course, the New Wear Crossing is nearing completion.
“The council is also continuing with its preparations for the continuous dual-carriageway from the A19 into the city centre.
“The Northern Gateway is part of the big picture for a council that is continually investing in our city. As well as improving journey times and our built environment, work on our infrastructure helps attract more private sector investment and links our communities.”
The council’s Cabinet backed the gateway’s works programme at its January meeting after the authority secured an extra £3.36million of funding for the scheme through the National Productivity Investment Fund (NPIF).
This allowed the council to revise the budget and propose extra features including more highway resurfacing and new paving throughout the North Bridge Street area.
The scheme includes:
• New signalised junction at the Church Street North/Dame Dorothy Street junction, with new pedestrian crossing facilities
• Road widening on Dame Dorothy Street for two-way traffic which will also include the construction of a new retaining wall within the grass verge
• New road layout at the North Bridge Street/Dame Dorothy Street junction to allow a right turn onto Dame Dorothy Street
• Amendments to the Wheatsheaf junction to allow all vehicles to travel southbound on North Bridge Street
• Changes to the roadmarkings over the Wearmouth Bridge and southern bridgehead roundabout