M4 junctions 3-12: smart motorwayRecently updated

Making the M4 a ‘smart motorway’ between junctions 3 and 12.

Region:  South East
Start date:  2016/17
Cost:  £586.4 to £862.4 million
Status:  PLANNED
Type:  Major Scheme
End date:  2021/22
Programme:  Smart Motorways

Progress report

The Secretary of State made a formal final decision on 2 September 2016 to grant development consent for the scheme. You can find the documents relating to this decision on the Planning Inspectorate website.

Following this decision there was a six week period in which the decision could have been challenged in the High Court. This process of legal challenge is known as Judicial Review. The deadline to challenge in the High Court was 15 October 2016, which has now passed.

Development Consent Order – requirements register

We made a commitment to publish and update a register listing the requirements to be completed as part of the Development Consent Order (specified under the Register of Requirements in Schedule 2). This sets out:

  • each requirement
  • whether the requirement needs approval by the Secretary of State (or other duty holder)
  • whether any approval has been applied for or given

What next?

Before we start the main construction work in Summer 2018, we have been undertaking preparation work which includes archaeological surveys and site surveys. The majority of this work is taking place on the highway verge and land adjacent to the scheme.

Timeline

  • Advanced motorway signalling and traffic management feasibility study identified this motorway
  • link as a priority for additional capacity: March 2008
  • Department for Transport announces a programme of smart motorways, including this scheme: 2009
  • Scheme development commenced: 2010
  • Roads Minister announces funding for this scheme: 2013
  • Public consultation: November 2014 - December 2015
  • Speed limit consultation: January-February 2015
  • Planning application submitted: 30 March 2015
  • Planning application accepted for examination: 27 April 2015
  • Notification of acceptance under the Planning Act: 28 May 2015
  • CH2M and Arcadis appointed to develop detailed scheme design: July 2015
  • Balfour Beatty and VINCI appointed to develop methodology and programme: July 2015
  • Secretary of State announced final decision: 2 September 2016
  • High Court Challenge period ended: 15 October 2016
  • Start of investigative works: March 2017
  • Start of main works: Summer 2018
  • End of works: End of March 2022

Why we need this scheme

The M4 motorway (M4) is the main strategic route between London, the west of England, and Wales. It connects directly to the M25 and Heathrow Airport.

The M4 carries over 130,000 vehicles per day and currently suffers from heavy congestion making journey times unreliable.

Traffic flows on the M4 are forecast to increase to an average of 160,000 vehicles per day over the next 20 years. This will result in even more congestion if nothing is done.

The scheme in detail

This scheme will use the latest technology to improve journeys by monitoring traffic flow and setting speed limits accordingly. This helps to keep traffic moving smoothly, instead of continually stopping and starting.

Information about road conditions and speed limits will be displayed to drivers on electronic road signs.

The proposal also involves converting the hard shoulder permanently to a traffic lane. This will create much needed extra capacity necessary to support economic growth.

The conversion of the hard shoulder will be continuous through junctions unless there is an operational reason not to do so.

We propose that the new lane created from the hard shoulder would continue through junctions 4, 5, 6, 7, 8/9 and 11. We aren’t proposing this for junctions 3 and 12 or at junctions 4b and 10, as these are motorway to motorway links.

To enable the provision of a smart motorway along the whole length of the proposed scheme, it will be necessary to widen or replace a number of bridges where there is currently no hard shoulder.

Aims

The objectives of the proposed scheme are to:
  • reduce congestion
  • smooth the flow of traffic to improve journey times
  • make journeys more reliable
  • support the economy and facilitate economic growth within the region, by providing much needed capacity on the motorway techniques
  • continue to deliver a high level of safety performance on the network using smart motorway techniques minimise environmental impacts of the scheme

Environment impact

Smart motorways typically have a lesser environmental impact than traditional motorway widening schemes as there is less physical work. This minimises the potential impact on watercourses, habitats, landscape etc. Additionally, the technology used for Smart motorways allows traffic flows to be regulated; reducing congestion and therefore reducing air quality issues. We’ve undertaken an environmental assessment including:
  • air quality
  • cultural heritage
  • landscape
  • nature conservation
  • geology and soils
  • materials and noise
  • vibration
The results of this environmental assessment will be published . This will include any mitigation measures needed such as speed limit reductions and noise barriers.

Project media files and documents

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There are no videos for this project

Project timeline

Planned roadworks

Roadworks and Events for England

The latest incident information for England's motorway and trunk routes provided by Highways England

Location : The A329M westbound. Lane Closures : Lane two is closed. Reason : Emergency resurfacing. Status : Currently Active. Period : from 05:22 on 25 May 2018 to 22:00 on 25 May 2018. Lanes Closed : There is one of two lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 1:39 pm
Location : The M4 eastbound between junctions J6 and J5 . Lane Closures : Lanes 2 and 3 will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 22:00 on 31 May 2018 to 05:30 on 1 June 2018. Schedule : From 23:00 on 1 June 2018 to 06:00 on 2 June 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be two of three lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The A329M eastbound. Reason : Emergency barrier repairs are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 21:00 on 25 May 2018 to 06:00 on 26 May 2018. Lanes Closed : All lanes will be closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The A329M eastbound. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 29 May 2018 to 2 June 2018. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 20 June 2018 to 23 June 2018. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 25 June 2018 to 30 June 2018. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 2 July 2018 to 7 July 2018. Lanes Closed : All lanes will be closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 eastbound between junctions J11 and J10 . Lane Closures : Lanes 1 and 2 will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 29 May 2018 to 2 June 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be two of three lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The A329M eastbound. Reason : Roadworks scheme is planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 21:00 on 29 May 2018 to 06:00 on 20 July 2018.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 westbound entry slip at junction J8 . Lane Closures : Lane one will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 31 May 2018 to 2 June 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be one of two lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The A329M eastbound. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 29 May 2018 to 1 June 2018. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 20 June 2018 to 23 June 2018. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 25 June 2018 to 30 June 2018. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 2 July 2018 to 7 July 2018. Lanes Closed : All lanes will be closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 eastbound between junctions J8 and J6 . Lane Closures : Lanes 2 and 3 will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 29 May 2018 to 31 May 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be two of three lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 eastbound exit slip at junction J10 . Lane Closures : Lanes 1 and 2 will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 29 May 2018 to 1 June 2018. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 20 June 2018 to 23 June 2018. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 25 June 2018 to 30 June 2018. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 2 July 2018 to 7 July 2018. Lanes Closed : All lanes will be closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 eastbound between junctions J12 and J11 . Lane Closures : Lane one will be closed. Reason : Roadside equipment maintenance is planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 22:00 on 30 May 2018 to 06:00 on 31 May 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be one of three lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The A329M westbound. Reason : Emergency barrier repairs are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 21:00 on 25 May 2018 to 06:00 on 26 May 2018. Lanes Closed : All lanes will be closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 westbound entry slip at junction J10 . Lane Closures : Lanes 1 and 2 will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 30 May 2018 to 1 June 2018. Lanes Closed : All lanes will be closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The A404M southbound between junctions J9A and J9 . Lane Closures : Lane one will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 31 May 2018 to 2 June 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be one of two lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 westbound between junctions J6 and J8 . Lane Closures : Lane three will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 29 May 2018 to 31 May 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be one of three lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M3 eastbound between junctions J3 and J2 . Lane Closures : Lanes 1 and 2 will be closed. Reason : Litter clearance is planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 22:00 on 30 May 2018 to 05:00 on 31 May 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be two of four lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 eastbound exit slip at junction J8 . Lane Closures : Lane one will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 31 May 2018 to 2 June 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be one of two lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M3 eastbound between junctions J3 and J2 . Lane Closures : Lanes 1, 2 and 3 will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 29 May 2018 to 2 June 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be three of four lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 westbound between junctions J8 and J12 . Reason : Roadworks scheme is planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 21:00 on 30 May 2018 to 06:00 on 1 June 2018.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M3 westbound at junction J4 . Lane Closures : Lane three will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 30 May 2018 to 1 June 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be one of three lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 westbound between junctions J7 and J10 . Lane Closures : Lane two will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 31 May 2018 to 2 June 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be one of three lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M3 westbound at junction J4 . Lane Closures : Lanes 1, 2 and 3 will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 22:00 on 29 May 2018 to 06:00 on 30 May 2018. Lanes Closed : All lanes will be closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The A308M eastbound between the junctions with the M4 and the A308 . Lane Closures : Lanes 1 and 2 will be closed. Reason : Road repairs are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 21:00 on 30 May 2018 to 06:00 on 31 May 2018. Lanes Closed : All lanes will be closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M3 eastbound between junctions J4A and J3 . Reason : Roadworks scheme is planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 22:00 on 29 May 2018 to 06:00 on 24 July 2018.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 eastbound exit slip at junction J10 . Reason : Roadworks scheme is planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 21:00 on 29 May 2018 to 06:00 on 20 July 2018.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M3 eastbound between junctions J4A and J4 . Lane Closures : Lanes 1, 2 and 3 will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 29 May 2018 to 2 June 2018. Schedule : From 22:00 on 20 July 2018 to 06:00 on 21 July 2018. Schedule : From 22:00 on 23 July 2018 to 06:00 on 24 July 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be three of four lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 westbound exit slip at junction J11 . Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 30 May 2018 to 1 June 2018. Lanes Closed : All lanes will be closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M3 westbound between junctions J3 and J4 . Lane Closures : Lanes 1, 2 and 3 will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 22:00 on 29 May 2018 to 06:00 on 30 May 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be three of four lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 westbound entry slip at junction J8 . Reason : Roadside drains works are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 31 May 2018 to 2 June 2018. Lanes Closed : All lanes will be closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M3 westbound between junctions J3 and J5 . Reason : Roadworks scheme is planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 22:00 on 29 May 2018 to 06:00 on 30 May 2018.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 westbound entry slip at junction J10 . Lane Closures : Lane one will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 30 May 2018 to 1 June 2018. Lanes Closed : All lanes will be closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M3 westbound between junctions J4 and J4A . Lane Closures : Lanes 1, 2 and 3 will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 22:00 on 29 May 2018 to 06:00 on 30 May 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be three of four lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 eastbound between junctions J6 and J5 . Lane Closures : Lanes 2 and 3 will be closed. Reason : Emergency barrier repairs are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 23:00 on 25 May 2018 to 05:00 on 26 May 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be two of three lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M3 eastbound at junction J4 . Lane Closures : Lanes 1, 2 and 3 will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 29 May 2018 to 2 June 2018. Schedule : From 22:00 on 20 July 2018 to 06:00 on 21 July 2018. Schedule : From 22:00 on 23 July 2018 to 06:00 on 24 July 2018. Lanes Closed : All lanes will be closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 westbound exit slip at junction J10 . Lane Closures : Lanes 1 and 2 will be closed. Reason : Emergency barrier repairs are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 21:00 on 25 May 2018 to 06:00 on 26 May 2018. Lanes Closed : All lanes will be closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M3 eastbound between junctions J4 and J3 . Lane Closures : Lanes 1, 2 and 3 will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 29 May 2018 to 2 June 2018. Schedule : From 22:00 on 20 July 2018 to 06:00 on 21 July 2018. Schedule : From 22:00 on 23 July 2018 to 06:00 on 24 July 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be three of four lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 eastbound between junctions J7 and J6 . Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 09:00 and 17:00 from 29 May 2018 to 1 June 2018.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 eastbound between junctions J10 and J7 . Lane Closures : Lane two will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 31 May 2018 to 2 June 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be one of three lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 westbound between junctions J8 and J12 . Lane Closures : Lanes 1, 2 and 3 will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 21:00 and 06:00 from 30 May 2018 to 1 June 2018. Lanes Closed : All lanes will be closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 eastbound between junctions J10 and J8 . Lane Closures : Lanes 1 and 2 will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 29 May 2018 to 31 May 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be two of three lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 westbound between junctions J7 and J8 . Lane Closures : The hard shoulder is closed. Reason : Roadworks. Status : Currently Active. Period : expect disruption until 06:00 on 24 November 2018.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 eastbound between junctions J10 and J7 . Lane Closures : Lane two will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 31 May 2018 to 2 June 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be one of three lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 westbound between junctions J7 and J8 . Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 09:00 and 17:00 from 29 May 2018 to 30 May 2018.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 westbound exit slip at junction J8 . Lane Closures : Lane one will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 31 May 2018 to 2 June 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be one of two lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm
Location : The M4 eastbound entry slip at junction J8 . Lane Closures : Lane one will be closed. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 22:00 and 06:00 from 31 May 2018 to 2 June 2018. Lanes Closed : There will be one of two lanes closed.
Posted: May 25, 2018, 12:30 pm

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Breaking News: Traffic Information

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The M11 in Essex is experiencing long delays southbound between J10 and J8
Posted: January 1, 1970, 12:00 am
Long delays on the M5 southbound due to bank holiday getaway traffic
Posted: January 1, 1970, 12:00 am

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