A1 Birtley to Coal House

Traffic on this busy section of the A1 is congested, especially during peak hours – making journeys unreliable. The number of vehicles using the road will increase with new housing and employment developments planned for the area, so road improvements are needed.

Start date July-Sept 2021
End date 2024/25
Cost TBC

Latest updates

  • 19 May 2021

    We're starting work

    We’re starting work to improve the A1 between Birtley and Coal House. This part of the A1 runs past the iconic Angel of the North and carries the A1 over the East Coast Main Line.

    The A1 between J65 and J67 suffers from heavy traffic build up at peak times, causing frustration for drivers and unreliable journey times.

    We are widening the carriageway adding an additional lane in both directions. The northbound carriageway will increase to three lanes and the southbound to four.

    This scheme is really important for the north east – benefitting the region’s economy and supports Transport for the North’s plans

    We’re working closely with Gateshead Council and local communities to make sure our scheme does not alter the local views and supports biodiversity and environmental interests. 

    You may have seen our billboards next to the A1 in Gateshead confirming that we’ve started working.

    Between May and July we are intending to:

    • Set up compounds to hold materials and equipment at Lamesley Road and Eighton Lodge
    • Put some barriers in the centre of Kingsway Roundabout so we can build a piling platform
    • Strengthening and hardening the central reservation at Kingsway and Eighton Lodge
    • Installing CCTV and speed enforcement cameras to help us clear breakdowns quickly and improve overall safety for drivers and road workers

     

    • We will establish narrower lanes from Junction 66 Eighton Lodge to Junction 67 Coal House to help us work to harden the central reserves on the 4 over bridges at the 2 junctions. This will give us additional space to accommodate the A1 whilst providing the required safe working areas for the bridge widening works which are due to start in July.

     

     

  • 25 January 2021

    Project given permission

    On 19 January the Secretary of State for Transport gave permission for this scheme to be constructed. This permission is called a Development Consent Order and you can find out more about it on the Planning Inspectorate's website. We are currently looking at when we will start work and this will be no later than summer 2021.

  • 27 October 2020

    Development Consent decision expected January 2021

    We’re expecting a final decision on the scheme by 21 January 2021. This decision is made by the Secretary of State for Transport who will say whether the scheme has permission to be constructed. Once a decision has been made, a letter and report will be published on the Planning Inspectorate’s website.

    You can read more about the process in our Development Consent Order (DCO) leaflet. You can also access all the information about the DCO on the Planning Inspectorate’s website free of charge, including:

    • The application form and other documents
    • Maps and plans
    • The environmental statement

     

    Contacting our team

    If you’d like to contact the team about this scheme, please email:

    A1BirtleytoCoalhouse@highwaysengland.co.uk

     

    We’re not currently able to collect post as we’re playing our part in preventing the spread of COVID-19.

  • 28 August 2020

    DCO (Development Consent Order) Examination Closed – 21 July 2020

    We submitted the DCO to the Planning Inspectorate on 14 August 2019 and it was accepted for examination on 10 September 2019.

    The examination, a six-month process, started on 21 January 2020 and closed on 21 July 2020. The Planning Inspectorate now has three months to submit their recommendations to the Secretary of State for Transport. This will be no later than 21 October 2020. The Secretary of State then has three months to make a decision which will be no later than 21 January 2021.

    All documents relating to the DCO, including the application form and accompanying documents, maps and plans, and the Environmental Statement can still be viewed electronically and free of charge on the Planning Inspectorate's National Infrastructure website.

    As we react to the government measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the project team are no longer able to receive postal enquires about the scheme.

    We ask that all enquiries are made via email to:

    A1BirtleytoCoalhouse@highwaysengland.co.uk

Project information

Overview

We will be improving approximately four miles of the A1 between junctions 65 (Birtley) and 67 (Coal House). The existing road will be widened between the junctions to help manage traffic joining and leaving the A1:

  • Northbound we’ll increase the number of lanes from two to three.
  • Southbound we’ll increase the number of lanes from three to four.

Junction 65, 66 and 67 will be modified to accommodate the additional lanes.

We also plan to replace Allerdene railway bridge, which carries the A1 over the east coast mainline railway. The current bridge was built nearly 40 years ago and requires regular maintenance which can cause disruption to traffic. We’ll build the new bridge just south of the existing bridge.

We’re designing this improvement scheme to benefit road users, local communities, and to support the region’s economy.

Once completed it will:

  • reduce congestion by increasing capacity for road users
  • improve the reliability of peoples’ journeys and reduce delays by increasing capacity of the road network
  • make journeys safer by improving the standard and capacity of the road
  • help support economic growth by improving the road to the Newcastle and Tyneside area (Team Valley Employment Zone)
  • support the government’s initiative for growth in the north

Documents

Closure information - July 2021

 

Friday 23 July

A1 fully closed southbound at J67 with a down and up using slip roads

A1 lanes 3 and 2 closed southbound between J68 and 66

A1 lane 2 closed northbound between J65 and 67

A1 fully closed southbound at J66 with a down and up using slip roads.

Saturday 24 July

A1 lanes 3 and 2 closed northbound from J63 to 65

A1 fully closed northbound between J65 to 68

Sunday 25 July

A1 lanes 3 and 2 closed southbound from J71 to 69

A1 fully closed southbound between J69 to 65

Monday 26 July

A1 full closure northbound at J67 with a down and up using slip roads

A1 lanes 3 and 2 closed southbound from J68 to 66

A1 lane 2 closed northbound from J65 to 67

 A1 full closure southbound at J66 with a down and up using slip roads

 A1M J66 roundabout full inner ring closure

 A1M J66 northbound exit slip lane 2 closed

A1M J66 southbound exit slip lane 2 closed

 A167 lane 2 closed southbound

 A167 lane restriction northbound 

B1296 Long Bank lane restriction

 

Tuesday 27 July

A1 full closure northbound at J67 with a down and up using slip roads

A1 lanes 3 and 2 closed southbound from J68 to 66

A1 lane 2 closed northbound from J65 to 67

 A1 full closure southbound at J66 with a down and up using slip roads

 A1M J66 roundabout full inner ring closure

 A1M J66 northbound exit slip lane 2 closed

A1M J66 southbound exit slip lane 2 closed

 A167 lane 2 closed southbound

 A167 lane restriction northbound 

B1296 Long Bank lane restriction

Wednesday 28 July

A1 full closure northbound at J67 with a down and up using slip roads

A1 lanes 3 and 2 closed southbound from J68 to 66

A1 lane 2 closed northbound from J65 to 67

 A1 full closure southbound at J66 with a down and up using slip roads

 A1M J66 roundabout full inner ring closure

 A1M J66 northbound exit slip lane 2 closed

A1M J66 southbound exit slip lane 2 closed

 A167 lane 2 closed southbound

 A167 lane restriction northbound 

B1296 Long Bank lane restriction

Thursday 29 July

A1 full closure northbound at J67 with a down and up using slip roads

A1 lanes 3 and 2 closed southbound from J68 to 66

A1 lane 2 closed northbound from J65 to 67

 A1 full closure southbound at J66 with a down and up using slip roads

 A1M J66 roundabout full inner ring closure

 A1M J66 northbound exit slip lane 2 closed

A1M J66 southbound exit slip lane 2 closed

 A167 lane 2 closed southbound

 A167 lane restriction northbound 

B1296 Long Bank lane restriction

Friday 30 July

A1 full closure northbound at J67 with a down and up using slip roads

A1 lanes 3 and 2 closed southbound from J68 to 66

A1 lane 2 closed northbound from J65 to 67

A1 full closure southbound at J66 with a down and up using slip roads

A1M J66 roundabout full inner ring closure

A1M J66 northbound exit slip lane 2 closed

A1M J66 southbound exit slip lane 2 closed

A167 lane 2 closed southbound

A167 lane restriction northbound 

B1296 Long Bank lane restriction

Traffic information

Information about scheduled roadworks and events on our motorways and major roads.

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