A major highways scheme which aims to reduce congestion on the northbound approach to the Tyne Tunnel will get underway next week.
The £3.3million project will see an additional lane provided between Lindisfarne roundabout and the Jarrow A185 turnoff.
Traffic chiefs at South Tyneside Council say it will mean that local traffic will not have to join queues for the Tyne Tunnel.
The scheme will help to reduce journey times on the A19 and the local network, reduce congestion and improve air quality through the improved traffic flows.
The work, which will be carried out by construction firm Galliford Try on behalf of South Tyneside Council, is scheduled to last around six months.
Councillor Mark Walsh, Lead Member for Housing and Transport, said: “We know how frustrating it can be for drivers to be stuck in queues.
“Currently, people wanting to go to Jarrow have to sit in the approach to the Tunnel, which is often congested.
“This scheme will allow local traffic to divert off the A19, which will relieve pressure on the local road network and the strategic road network.
“It will also help improve air quality, thanks to better traffic flows and a reduction in exhaust emissions from standing traffic.”
Coun Walsh added that disruption will be kept to a minimum, and during the daytime there will continue to be two lanes open, albeit narrowed.
The project will also involve some overnight work.
Coun Walsh said: “Improving strategic transport links is a key part of the council’s economic vision.
“The A19 is one of the region’s key assets and by reducing congestion and journey times, we help promote sustainable growth.
“As always, we will work to keep disruption to a minimum and thank drivers and residents for their patience.”
The project received just over £2 million from the Department for Transport’s National Productivity Infrastructure Fund.