Green light for A1 (M) Flaxby junction improvements

North Yorkshire leaders with Northern Powerhouse Minister (centre) announcing the Junction 47 A1/A59 upgrade.
North Yorkshire leaders with Northern Powerhouse Minister (centre) announcing the Junction 47 A1/A59 upgrade.

Minister for the Northern Powerhouse and Local Growth, Jake Berry MP, has given the final go ahead for upgrades to Junction 47 of the A1/A59 at Flaxby.

The upgrade is said to address existing congestion at the junction, and also increase its capacity to accommodate additional traffic generated at the new Business Park at Flaxby.

The park was given the green light by Harrogate Borough Council in June this year and has been said to potentially create 3,000 new jobs.

Mr Berry said: "This government is investing billions of pounds in transport across the north to build the Northern Powerhouse and deliver improved journeys for the whole region.”

Funding for the Junction 47 upgrade was originally announced as part of the Local Growth Deal funding from the Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG) in January 2015, following a successful national bid by the York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Enterprise Partnership (LEP).

Since then, the LEP secured additional funding by working with local and central government partners, North Yorkshire County Council and Highways England.

Chairman of the LEP, Barry Dodd, said the junction provided access to a 'key corridor' to the A1 (M).

Mr Dodd said: “We are keen to play our part in the development of the Northern Powerhouse by reflecting the enormous opportunities our rural area plays in its economic growth. Not only does it provide a fantastic leisure destination for our own residents, it also has an enormous visitor economy, alongside growing industries such as agritech, food manufacturing and energy.

“All of our key partners recognise that improvements need to be made to this junction, to deal with both existing capacity issues, and to accommodate growth in the LEP area.

"The junction provides access from our key east west corridor to the A1 (M) the major north south national arterial route, and provides access from our area to the rest of the UK and beyond.”

Mr Berry MP made the announcement today as part of his first official tour of North Yorkshire this week.

During his visit, he was also updated on plans for Harrogate’s Station Gateway Project which has been indicatively allocated £1million in growth deal funding from the LEP for the transport element of the scheme.

Minister Mr Berry MP for Rossendale and Darwen, was appointed Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Northern Powerhouse and Local Growth in June this year.

What are the proposed improvements?

- Signal control is at all arms of A1(M) 47 with storage areas created on both the roundabout and approaches through widening.

- Extra lanes to be introduced on both A1(M) exits and the flares improved on both A59 approaches.

- Widening at locations around the circulatory carriageway in order to create the required additional lanes and stacking capacity.

- Linked traffic signals at the adjacent A59 / A168 3-arm priority junction to the east of Junction 47 at the same time as the A1(M) J47 scheme.