road closure

On the 12 to 17 February 2018, the road into Newton Abbot from Totnes will be closed for 24 hours a day from Ogwell Cross to Asda Roundabout. 

The following is the information that we have been provided, but in the meantime, we can expect that traffic will divert through Coach Road and through the village to get through Priory Road. So the simple advice is to limit your need to get to and through Newton Abbot. We can expect extreme bottle necks in Abbotskerswell!!

Text from Sally Henley, Newton Abbot Town Development Officer;

This closure will be well signed. In advance of the works, besides the normal yellow advance notice boards, DCC will also be placing illuminated 'Variable Message Signs' (VMS) at key locations. In some cases, this will be the permanent message signs situated around the town - Exeter Road roundabout, outside the racecourse, and on Torquay Road leaving Penn Inn roundabout. However others, including one at the Ogwell Cross roundabout at one at the Totnes end of the road, will be temporary mobile units. These signs will also remain in use during the closure as well, alongside normal closure signs, to give additional advance warning for drivers, and from the Totnes end they will make explicitly clear that there is no access to Newton Abbot. Along the length of the A381 from Totnes to Ogwell Cross, signs will be placed and every notable junction also advising that there is no access to Newton Abbot.

Coach Road, Priory Road through Abbotskerswell, and the Chercombe Bridge Road route will all have signs placed at each end advising that they are unsuitable for large vehicles. The reason for placing signs of this type is threefold; We are aware that the Police would not have the resources to enforce a temporary weight restriction, which makes the high costs of introducing such a legal order ineffective. From experience, DCC knows that drivers often do not take much notice of signs telling them that they can't use a road, especially if they use it regularly and know that they can. Stating that a route is 'Unsuitable' is more likely to deter some drivers. Lastly, by providing specific wording, this may help to also deter large vehicles such as box vans that are actually lighter than 7.5 tonnes but still quite large - it is the size of vehicles rather than their weight that would be of concern here.

DCC will have 'gatemen' controlling the closure at either end of the closed section of road, and the operatives at the Ogwell Cross end will be able to speak to drivers of large vehicles to advise them not to use Coach Road (or the Ogwell-Chercombe Bridge Road route). However, neither they nor DCC has any authority to physically stop these vehicles if they are unwilling to be co-operative. For this reason, placing operatives at other locations purely for this purpose would not be productive. This is something that only the Police would be able to do, and whilst it is understood that local County Cllrs have spoken to them about this, they do not have the resources to be able to assist in this matter.

Traffic Light Phasing

The traffic signals on Wolborough Street itself use detector loops, and should not activate if no vehicles are detected. The closed section of road will remain in use by vehicles accessing businesses between the lights and the closure, as well as the Wolborough Way car park, plus some works traffic itself, so the lights do need to still remain active for traffic coming from the direction of the closure. Reprogramming a set of lights completely is a major undertaking, and not generally possible for short-duration road closures - especially since without in-depth studies of traffic flows, it is possible that this could make the impact worse rather than better.

Alternative Routes

There will only be one signed diversion route for all traffic, which will be via the A385 from Totnes to Paignton, and the A380 from Paignton back to Newton Abbot. Whilst it is acknowledged that this is a lengthy diversion, if at all possible any signed diversion has to be via roads which are the same or higher in category than the road being closed. This is the shortest route available, and the shortest which would be suitable for heavy traffic. It is acknowledged that, unfortunately, as with any road closure some local traffic is likely to find shorter routes via minor roads, and regrettably there is nothing that DCC is able to do to completely prevent this.

Public details of the work can be found on the DCC website via this link. This information is due to be updated and expanded shortly.



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