Lancaster motorists face more disruption

MOTORISTS face more disruption in Lancaster city centre next month as National Grid begins another phase of its works to replace gas mains.

The access onto Moor Lane from Stonewell was closed last week for six weeks of works, but more misery is on the way for drivers from July 22 when engineers move on to Cable Street and Damside Street.

Those works, which will last until August 31, will see one lane closed on Cable Street, while Damside Street, leading to St George’s Quay, will be completely closed at times, with diversions in place.

National Grid says the bus station and taxi rank off Cable Street should be unaffected by the works, which will see a 150m section of cast iron gas main replaced with a new plastic pipe which will last for at least 80 years.

The company says it is using the latest technology to reduce the scale of roadworks.

Ian Welsby, Lancashire County Council’s highways manager for Lancaster, said: “We are working closely with National Grid to try to keep disruption to the minimum possible, but clearly the location and scale of these works mean there will be a significant level of disruption to traffic.

“We have done what we can to reduce the impact by scheduling the work during the school holidays when traffic is quieter and we’ll be working with National Grid throughout to ensure the day-to-day work is managed to minimise disruption as far as possible.”

Part of Moor Lane will be re-opened from Stonewell over the next few weeks as the current works progress up as far as the junction with St Peter’s Road. Engineers will also be moving onto Edward Street, at which point drivers will be unable to turn from Edward Street onto Moor Lane.

The works began in April on Penny Street and are part of an £84m package of improvements to the North West’s gas supply network.

National Grid says the work will make sure that gas continues to be delivered safely and reliably to homes, businesses, shops, offices and schools across the city.

Its spokeswoman, Jeanette Unsworth, said: “Our purpose is to connect people to the energy they use. This investment will make sure we can all rely on having energy at our fingertips, whenever we need it.”

There will be more disruption in the Cable Street area from February when United Utilities install a new underground storm water tank.

The taxi rank and some bus station stops will be temporarily relocated.