Collaboration and road layout innovation lead to UK national recognition
Highways England, WJ Group, and Clearview Intelligence have been collectively shortlisted for the Improving Customers’ Journeys category at the annual Highways England Awards in March.
It follows the successful completion of an £8.5 multi-disciplinary project along a 9.4 kilometre stretch of the A38 between Ripley and the M1 junction 28, which included resurfacing, enhanced road markings, installation of solar road studs and coloured anti-skid surfacing.
Andy Walker WJ Group Commercial Director said: “We worked closely with Highways England and Clearview Intelligence to ensure a successful outcome on the A38 and are delighted the project has been recognised at the highest level. The award shortlist nomination is a clear endorsement for the collaborative approach to deliver flagship road safety schemes that benefit the operating community whilst providing a better road user journey experience.”
The improvement works were planned by Highways England Area 7 to deliver a long-term scheme along the network, which is used by 23,000 vehicles daily. Due to challenges including a lack of street lighting, short on/off slip roads and tight bends, an effective and innovative solution was required.
WJ Group’s Weatherline+ was used, for the road markings, to provide high levels of retro reflectivity even in wet conditions, along with Methyl Methacrylate (MMA) high friction surfacing to reduce the risks of skidding. These innovative solutions were used in combination with Clearview’s SolarLite Active Road Studs, which offer up to ten times more visibility and reaction time compared to traditional reflective studs.
Following completion of the scheme last year, a survey of drivers using the route found 91 percent felt visibility had improved and 87 percent felt reasonably or totally safe using the road after the upgrade compared to just 28 percent before.
Pete Cattell, Clearview Intelligence’s Senior Solutions Manager North West and Midlands, said: “Every scheme we implement has the same objective; to improve the overall journey for drivers whilst meeting the needs of clients. In this case, the best way of meeting that goal was to work in collaboration with WJ Group and Highways England to maximise the different solutions that were available.
“We are thrilled that by combining innovation and collaboration we have not only delivered a solution that has been positively recognised by drivers, but industry experts as well.”
Feedback from the driver survey saw many respondents calling for the “amazing” scheme to be replicated “on every road in the country” as it would be “great across the UK”.
The Improving Customers’ Journeys award category recognises schemes which help customers feel more in control of their journeys, demonstrate effective network management and make changes to improve road users’ needs and experiences.
The Highways England Awards will take place in Birmingham on 28 March.