The consultation for the Implementation of Variable Mandatory Speed Limits (VMSL) on the M23 between junctions 8 and 10 and the permanent 50 mph speed limit on the westbound carriageway of the Gatwick Spur from M23 junction 9 to junction 9a, was undertaken between 11 December 2017 and 15 January 2018. Following this consultation, the summary of comments received and our responses to those comments can now be found in the consultation report.
We have completed the detailed design of the Scheme and hope to shortly announce the formal commencement of the scheme with our delivery partner, Kier.
We held public information exhibitions between September and January to inform the public about the scheme prior to construction commencing in March 2018 and answer any concerns about the upcoming works.
We are now continuing with stakeholder engagement and hosting three more Public Information Exhibitions. The dates and venues for these events are shown in the community news section below.
We are commencing dialogue with Surrey and West Sussex County Councils to ensure diversion routes are fit for purpose when they are to be used.
We are also working closely with Gatwick Airport and will be issuing joint communications shortly.
Early environmental works commenced in December and are nearing completion. This has included vegetation and tree clearance along the verge. This clearance was undertaken at night time to minimise the impact on motorway and Airport traffic and was necessary to accommodate new retaining walls, environmental (noise) barriers, gantries and emergency areas as part of the scheme.
Advanced works will commence in late March 2018. This involves pre-construction surveys, establishing a site compound and installation of temporary CCTV.
Main construction works on this project will commence in mid-June 2018. This will follow the implementation of narrow lanes in early June.
To implement narrow lanes, we will require a series of overnight closures, for more information on these closures, see the roadworks tab below.
Diversion routes will be clearly signed during full carriageway closures.
The works will commence at Junction 8 and move south towards Junction 10. We will be initially working in the verge between Junctions 8 and 9. Once the verge works are complete, we will change the arrangement of narrow lanes and commence working in the central reserve. For Junction 9 to 10, we will be starting in the central reserve first and then completing the works on the verge.
|2016 ‚Äď Now||Design works|
|March 2018||Start of advanced works|
|June 2018||Start of main works|
|March 2020||Completion of main works|
Public Information Exhibitions
|Monday 16th April 2018||3pm to 8pm||Nutfield Lodge||Nutfield Road, Redhill, Surrey, RH1 4ED|
|Tuesday 24th April 2018||3pm to 8pm||Gatwick Airport, South Terminal Arrivals (Level 2)||Perimeter Road, Horley, Gatwick, RH6 0NP|
|Thursday 26th April 2018||3pm to 8pm||Burstow Village Hall||Wheelers Lane, Smallfield, RH6 9PT|
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:
- reduced 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 on motorways, which already are among the safest roads in the world
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 are 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 (SOS) 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 Rd to minimise our response times to incidents
We have considered the full range of environmental topics and found that there will be no long term significant 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 have considered are:
- noise and vibration, air quality, ecology and visual impacts in relation to nearby housing
- the SSSI (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 have 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 will 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 have tried to minimise vegetation clearance, but in some areas it is not always possible.
We are 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 do not require resurfacing as part of this scheme. Highways England will resurface these lanes when the condition of pavement falls below our high 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