Have your say
We've introduced a new engagement tool where you can give your views on the project. Please click on the map below to add your comments about specific parts of the route.
We've completed work on an additional lane to increase road space. A 50mph speed limit will remain in place as well as CCTV monitoring and a free recovery service.
Work will continue overnight to install technology so this stretch of the M23 becomes a fully operational smart motorway. Stopped vehicle detection technology will be added in the future, as set out in the Transport Secretaryâ€™s smart motorway action plan.
|2016 â€“ March 2018||Design works|
|July 2018||Start of advanced works|
|September 2018||Start of main works|
|July 2019||Switch to central reservation|
|Spring 2020||Completion of main works|
Over the next two years we'll be looking to help and support local community projects, along with our two chosen charities, Kent Air Ambulance and Neuro-Kinex Kids in Crawley, as well as supporting local schools and colleges with STEM work and apprentice/careers advice. We recently undertook a project for a local school to clear land so the children can plant in the spring and grow a sensory garden for the pupils to enjoy.
You can request to be placed on the weekly M23 junction 8 to 10 update regarding the scheme. To sign up for this email: M23J8_10smart@highwaysengland.co.uk
Why we need this scheme
The M23 is a crucial part of the UK strategic road network connecting Crawley and Gatwick Airport to the M25 motorway, routes into London and the rest of the UK. This stretch of the M23 is heavily used by traffic travelling to and from Gatwick Airport and between Brighton and London, especially during UK holiday periods. As a result safety, congestion and journey times are all key issues that need to be improved. As junction 9 of the M23 is the main access for traffic travelling to and from Gatwick Airport, this scheme is of particular local and national economic and political importance.
This scheme aims to:
- reduce congestion by smoothing the flow of traffic to improve journey times and make them more reliable
- facilitate economic growth within the region, by providing much-needed capacity on the motorway
- maximise motorway capacity while maintaining safety
The scheme in detail
The proposed scheme will enable proactive management of the M23 carriageway, including the link roads from/to the M25 at junction 8, the spur to Gatwick Airport and to junction 10.
The scheme includes:
- converting the hard shoulder to create a permanent fourth lane between junctions 8 and 10
- converting the westbound hard shoulder along the spur to Gatwick Airport (towards Junction 9a) to create three permanent lanes
- redefined junction layouts to accommodate the fourth lane - in particular we're creating a dedicated northbound slip road before junction 9 to minimise congestion as traffic leaves the motorway and heads towards Gatwick airport
- new gantries with variable message signs, providing customers with better information
- installing new electronic information signs, signals and CCTV cameras - these will be used to vary speed limits and manage traffic flow and incidents
- installing 12 emergency areas to use in place of the hard shoulder which include emergency roadside telephones and CCTV cameras to improve emergency service response times
- improving the central reserve and adding a reinforced barrier to improve safety
- adding new noise barriers in built up areas
- carriageway widening to provide new acceleration and deceleration lanes to our maintenance facility, Weatherhill Depot
- creating a new emergency turn-around facility at Coopers Hill Road to minimise our response times to incidents
We've considered the full range of environmental topics and found that there will be no significant long-term effects. Temporary effects during construction will be slight changes in views, construction noise, disruption to road users and some loss of habitat. The key issues we've considered are:
- noise and vibration, air quality, ecology and visual impacts in relation to nearby housing
- the Site of Special Scientific Interest between Mole Gate and Reigate Escarpment
- protected species and habitats including bats, badgers and great crested newts
- the setting of conservation areas and heritage assets such as Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
- public rights of way
We've carried out surveys for protected species adjacent to the motorway. Mitigation work will be undertaken within Natural England licenses. The vegetation clearance has to be undertaken at certain times of the year to minimise disruption to wildlife.
We'll retain existing screening planting where possible and propose additional planting upon completion of the scheme to minimise views of the motorway and associated equipment. Much of the M23 between junction 8 and 10 is either in a cutting or on an embankment, so to provide sufficient structural integrity to the new running lane significant earthworks are necessary. We've tried to minimise vegetation clearance, but in some areas it's not always possible.
We're installing new environmental barriers to minimise noise effects. A plan showing the location of the existing and new barriers will be provided in due course. The plans will show the length and the height of the new barriers. The type of barrier being used for this scheme is absorptive as this type takes in noise, reducing the noise energy that reaches residents.
The new lanes (termed lanes 1 and 4) will have low noise pavement. The existing lanes are in good condition and don't require resurfacing as part of this scheme. We'll resurface these lanes when the condition of pavement falls below our required standards.
Project media files and documents
Roadworks and Events for England
The latest incident information for England's motorway and trunk routes provided by Highways England
Breaking News: Traffic Information
The latest current breaking news items for England's motorway network