Support growing for junction plans

Plans for major improvements to the busy Silverlink junction are being supported by council leaders.

At their meeting on Monday, cabinet members at North Tyneside Council are set to agree their response to the formal consultation over the future of the A19/A1058 Coast Road junction.

And they are urging the Highways Agency, which has drawn up the plans, to ensure there are no delays to the estimated timescale, saying the work will boost the local economy and reduce rush-hour congestion.

Mayor Norma Redfearn said: “The scheme to improve this junction is very much needed and long overdue.

“It is an exceptionally busy roundabout and at peak times drivers often endure bottlenecks.

“These works would make a huge difference not only to residents of North Tyneside but also to the whole of Tyne and Wear as it would keep traffic moving on the A19 and A1.

“Upgrading this junction will reduce congestion, improve road safety and bring about our main aim, to attract more investment and more jobs to our area.”

The Highways Agency proposals include lowering the A19 beneath the existing roundabout, erecting two bridges to carry the roundabout traffic above it, constructing new slip roads and building a replacement bridge to support the A1058 Coast Road across the junction.

A full consultation is under way with the council supporting the scheme but calling for the existing crossing points for cyclists and pedestrians to be retained, along with the bus stops, and for good public lighting.

If the project is given the go-ahead by the government, work is set to begin in spring 2016 and the road will be opened in summer 2018.