A six-month scheme to move gas pipes running under the A592, next to Lake Windermere, starts Monday 8 May, with bosses keen to stress that the area remains ‘open’ at all times.
National Grid Gas Distribution must move its pipes so that United Utilities can continue its bigger scheme to install a new wastewater pipeline, to improve water quality in England’s largest natural lake.
The gas pipes beneath the A592 are exactly where United Utilities needs its new pipe to be, so the gas network has agreed to move its pipes to the other side of the road.
National Grid Gas Distribution can only do this work when United Utilities is clear of the area. It therefore has a window between 8 May and 31 October, when the water company returns to start phase two of its three-phase scheme.
Traffic lights will be in place as gas teams work in stretches of up to 200m of the road, at any one time. They will start just after the entrance to Storrs Hall Hotel on 8 May and, once that area is completed, will begin moving north. They will finish at Ferry Nab in October.
To keep vehicles moving, the lights have in-built technology that constantly monitor and adapt to traffic. There is also the option to manually control the lights at busy periods.
The works have been planned in full coordination with Cumbria Highways.
Bill Adamson, construction manager for this gas scheme, said: “Local people will know that the sewer teams have to close the road during the work they're doing. We won’t need to do that. Our work area will simply have traffic lights at either end, with measures in place to ensure drivers have the shortest wait possible. We’re also going door-to-door to discuss the scheme with residents, and we’ve spoken to local businesses to explain the work and overcome any issues - for example, we’ve built into our timeline the need to be clear of the marina area, so that boats can be taken off the water after the summer season.
“With a job like this, it’s inevitable we’ll cause some inconvenience, but we’re doing everything we can to minimise it. Our teams will work seven days a week, to get the job done as quickly as we can.”
As routine during such work on gas pipes, the gas feed into individual homes and businesses will need to be switched off and then turned back on again by engineers working for National Grid Gas Distribution. Residents and businesses will be given advance notice and the supplies should be back on again the same day that they’re switched off.
National Grid Gas Distribution has a customer team on hand to answer any queries from residents or business owners. They can be reached on 0161 703 1000 / 1010.
If anyone smells gas during the six-month scheme (or at any time), it is important they do not dismiss it as related to the ongoing work. Report it immediately to the national gas emergency line 0800 111 999 (calls to this number are recorded and may be monitored).