New underpass opens as Bexhill-Hastings Link Road takes shape

Another milestone has been reached in construction of the new Bexhill to Hastings Link Road.

The newly diverted Crowhurst Road, in St Leonards, reopened on Saturday (June 20) after a three-week closure and now carries traffic via an underpass beneath the new road.

Meanwhile, the first phase of construction, which the county council says is aimed at improving traffic flow in the area around the Link Road, has been completed.

The approaches to the roundabout at the junction of The Ridge and Harrow Lane, in St Leonards, have been widened and the road resurfaced.

The county council said the second phase, which began on Monday (June 22), will see improvements to the roundabout at the northern end of Queensway, including extended approach lanes, carried out over a period of around 12 weeks.

Councillor Carl Maynard, East Sussex County Council lead member for transport and environment, said: “The opening of the new underpass is another exciting step towards the completion of the Link Road.

“The associated roundabout improvements are part of our broader plan to improve traffic flow on The Ridge, which will have huge and lasting benefits to residents and the area’s economy.

“We do appreciate that this kind of project does bring some temporary disruption, so I’d like to thank motorists for their patience so far and ask them to bear with us while this work is completed.”

The final phase of local highway works, to be completed once the Link Road opens later this year, will see sections of bus lane introduced on the A259.

The county council said the new Link Road is expected to help bring 2,000 new homes, 3,000 new jobs and more than £1 billion of economic benefits to the area.

The authority added it will also relieve the high level of traffic congestion on the A259 between Bexhill and Hastings and on other local roads.

The multi-million pound road was due to open in May this year.

But poor weather and unexpected archaeological finds have hampered progress on the project.

In September last year a 0.6-mile section of the new route was opened earlier than planned and in the summer the construction of Woodsgate Park Overbridge was completed.

Heavy rainfall and additional archaeological investigation has caused some delays, the county council said.

Construction of the £113m Link road started in December 2012 amid protests from the Combe Haven Defenders.

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