More than five weeks of disruption avoided by careful coordination of utilities work

22 December 2016
"We've worked closely with London's utilities companies to coordinate their vital works, minimise the disruption caused and have the work completed now rather than have repeated disruptions over a long period"

Drivers are to be spared significant disruption after TfL confirmed today that utilities companies will be coordinating work along the A501 around Marylebone and Euston over the festive period, carrying out 100 projects at the same time to take advantage of low traffic volumes.

The work will be carried out between Monday 26 December and Tuesday 3 January when traffic in central London is at its lowest level.

Due to the coordination between a number of different companies the series of high-impact utilities work in 2017 that otherwise would be needed will now be avoided. In total some five weeks of disruption has been spared.

Support new homes and businesses

London's rapid growth means that the city's aging utilities require significant maintenance to support new homes and businesses.

Work planned for the Marylebone Road and Euston Road area includes repairs to water mains, as well as highway works, which will mean the road is reduced to one lane in some locations.

National Grid will replace an aged gas main on Baker Street while Thames Water simultaneously repairs their pipes at the same location - massively reducing the overall impact of both works.

While lane closures are in place for this and other major utilities work, there will be repairs to the footway, carriageway, lighting and drainage.

Minimum disruption

TfL will also capitalise on the lane closures to prune overhanging trees, ensuring the continued safe operation of the road with minimum disruption.

Garrett Emmerson, Chief Operating Officer of Surface Transport at TfL, said: 'We know that traffic levels fall by up to a quarter in central London between Christmas and New Year.

'That's why we've worked closely with London's utilities companies to coordinate their vital works, minimise the disruption caused and have the work completed now rather than have repeated disruptions over a long period.'

The Mayor of London recently announced a series of measures to directly tackle London's congestion in the short term including improving traffic light systems and how road users receive live information to make more effective decisions, and an investment of £50m in bus priority schemes.

Rapid population growth

The causes of congestion - a rise in private hire vehicles, internet shopping and construction - are all driven by London's rapid population growth and the Mayor and TfL are investing in a range of improvements that will encourage greater walking, cycling and use of public transport.

Road users are advised to plan ahead, take alternative routes where possible and leave more time for their journeys over the festive period, and to check TfL's website and follow TfL's twitter feeds - @TfLTrafficNews and @TfLBusAlerts - for live information on London's roads.

Bob Collington, Thames Water Managing Director of Water, said: 'Our pipes are all buried underground and impossible to get to without causing disruption to some of the busiest roads in the country.

'While we always try to combine work in this way when possible, it makes even more sense to get in and do the job when it's quieter over the festive period.'

Essential work

Steve Mason, Head of Contracts National Grid Gas Distribution, said: 'Our essential work helps ensure Londoners are kept connected to safe and reliable gas supplies for cooking and heating.

'We do all we can to deliver this vital work with as little disruption to the public as possible including using innovative technology, planning and scheduling our work carefully and consulting with others so we can work together to ease any associated.

'We're delighted to be working together with TfL and Thames Water to get this work done during a time when the roads are quieter and any disruption caused by the roadworks will be minimised.'