‘Significant delays’ expected for major works on M8/A8

Ballieston InterchangeDrivers are to be diverted off the M8 and A8 in Glasgow for ten weeks as contractors connect the newly built M8 to the existing motorway at Baillieston Interchange.

The project, which forms part of the M8 M73 M74 Motorway Improvements Project, will see both east and westbound traffic on the M8/A8 diverted via the newly aligned A8 near Bargeddie from 8pm on February 17.

These major works will involve removing 13,000m² of existing carriageway and 40,000m³ of earth to connect the new M8 to the existing M8 which is approximately 5m higher.

Following the excavation, 1,500m of drainage and 12,000 tonnes of blacktop will then be laid to complete the M8 ‘Missing Link’ and allow the new M8 between Baillieston Interchange and Eurocentral to open to traffic for the first time.

Graeme Reid, Transport Scotland project manager for the M8 M73 M74 Motorway Improvements Project, said: “The M8 M73 M74 Motorway Improvements Project is a very significant investment in the Central Scotland motorway network which will greatly reduce congestion and boost the economy.

“These scheduled works are a major milestone of the £500m investment in the main route between Scotland’s two largest cities, which will see the completion of the M8 between Glasgow and Edinburgh.

“Whilst delays are inevitable on a project of this scale and complexity, and the impact this has on the travelling public is regrettable, these works are necessary to complete the M8 Missing Link, and road users can look forward to realising the benefits of the new motorway when it fully opens to traffic upon completion of these works in Spring 2017.”

The new M8 motorway includes 5km of new carriageway, east and westbound, which has already been built to the south of the existing A8, between Baillieston Interchange and the North Calder Water Bridge near Shawhead Junction.

When the new M8 is opened to traffic, the existing and improved A8 will be used by local traffic, separating local journeys from the strategic Glasgow and Edinburgh traffic.

As a result, it is expected this will ease current traffic volumes by up to 25 per cent on the motorway and will improve journey times during peak periods by shaving almost 20 minutes through the M8 corridor.

The improvements also include 5km of new pedestrian and cycle paths which run parallel to the new M8 motorway, which are part of 16km of new cycle paths being built between Baillieston and Newhouse.

During the 10 week diversion, two lanes of traffic will be maintained during peak times and signed diversion routes will be in place on all approaches to Baillieston Interchange including the A8, M8, M73, and the surrounding local roads.

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