Testo's transformation almost complete with first traffic to pass over new flyover within days
The first traffic will pass over a new £124.5 million flyover this Monday, it has been confirmed.
But there will still be a run of closures head of the moment vehicles can travel over the bridge built above Testo’s Roundabout at Boldon, as Highways England pushes on with the finishing sections of work.
The scheme, which began in March 2019, aims to create safer and more free-flowing journeys, will welcome traffic for the first time from Monday, June 7, with construction to continue to fully complete the upgrade.
It means traffic on the A19 will no longer need to stop at the interchange and can continue to flow thanks to the 1,393-tonne flyover, with drone shots shared by the team showing how the structure looks from above.
Sliproads have also been created so traffic can join from the east and west via A184 Newcastle Road.
An estimated 83,400 vehicles are predicted to use the route every day by 2033 and the changes will also help manage traffic using the International Advanced Manufacturing Park (IAMP) being built near Nissan, with works also ongoing at Downhill Lane.
Highways England project manager Liam Quirk said: “There is still a fair bit of work to be done before we can completely open to traffic but we are delighted that people wishing to continue travel on the A19 can now do so without having to use the roundabout.
"I’d like to thank the public for their ongoing patience and support.
“We’re almost at the end of the road when it comes to being fully complete on the roundabout upgrade, so I’d urge drivers to be patient with us for a little bit longer because we do have some closures and diversions in place for a few more weeks as we reach the finish line.”
To allow traffic to flow over the flyover as safely and quickly as possible for Monday, all approaches to the roundabout will be closed from 8pm on Friday, June 4, until 6am on Monday, June 7.
Diversion routes will be in place throughout as work is carried out and drivers are advised to check before setting off on their journey.
Full closures include:
*Northbound A19 between A1231 Hylton and Boldon/Fellgate
*Southbound A19 between Boldon / Fellgate and the A1231 Hylton
*A184 eastbound between Abingdon Way, Testo’s Roundabout and White Mare Pool
*A184 westbound between White Mare Pool, Testo’s Roundabout and Abingdon Way
The beams of the 142-metre flyover were made by Cleveland Bridge, the same firm which helped create the Wembley Stadium Arch, Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Shard in London, with a 1,000 tonne crane brought in to lift the sections into place.
It is made up of 25-paired girders, the largest 33 metres in length, with the heaviest pair weighing in at 60 tonnes.
Closures and diversions will also remain in place for the nearby A19 Downhill Lane major scheme, which will provide extra capacity on the junction between the A19 and the A1290 in Sunderland, supporting the regional economy and the development of the IAMP.
For more information about the scheme follow @HighwaysNEAST on Twitter and visit https://highwaysengland.co.uk/our-work/yorkshire-and-north-east/a19-testo-s-junction/.