Your questions about construction
If the proposed A303 Stonehenge scheme is given the go ahead by the Secretary of State for Transport, the main construction works wouldn’t take place immediately.
The first 12 -18 months will be spent preparing the site including building the construction compounds, carrying out all the archaeological pre-works needed together with some of the smaller improvements such as at Rollestone Crossroads.
Detailed information about construction has not been finalised yet, but we’ve tried to cover some of your questions in brief.
Who will carry out the works?
Our main works contractor is a joint venture made up of internationally renowned companies FCC Construcción, WeBuild and BeMo Tunnelling. A range of local, regional and national contractors will help them build the scheme.
When will the works start?
No works are planned until the Secretary of State has finished the current process of relooking at our planning application. If approved, our contractors will start planning straightaway, taking our plans and designs and working out the best way of building the scheme. However, we will need time to get back up to speed and we are not expecting any preliminary works to start before 2024.
Where will the construction compounds be?
There will be three compounds:
The main construction compound - located between Longbarrow Roundabout and Winterbourne Stoke (1) with access off the A360 via a small temporary roundabout.
Two smaller compounds - one at Countess Services at Amesbury (2) and the other next to the B3083 (3). Access to this compound would occasionally be off the B3083 but a temporary road (known as a “haul road”) would be constructed within the site boundary to connect it to the main site compound.
There are no plans for any other site compounds.
Where will the chalk from the tunnel be processed?
The chalk material excavated by the tunnel boring machines will be treated and excess water removed in a number of silos in the main construction compound. These will be a maximum of 20 metres high, but the exact height and location of these is yet to be finalised.
What other buildings will be in the compound?
Our main works contractor will need to assess what buildings and portacabins will be required when they start planning in detail.
How many workers will be on site, and where will they stay?
We are expecting between 150 - 300 workers per week to be on site during the main works - some for short periods of time, and some longer term who will need to stay in the local area. We will look to work with local accommodation providers to manage this, but we’re not planning to build residential accommodation for workers.
What will the working hours be?
The normal working hours for most activity during main works will be:
- 07:00 – 19:00 (Mon – Fri)
- 07:00 – 13:00 (Sat)
An hour either side of this may be used to start and close down activities such as maintenance, deliveries and moving between the places of work and compounds.
- Winterbourne Stoke – working hours north of the village reduced to 07:30 - 18:00
- Earthworks – working hours extended in British Summer Time to 22:00 (Mon – Sat) with occasional Sundays and Bank Holidays
- Tunnelling – 24 hours per day 7 days per week. This includes the processing of the excavated material but not the transport or placing material to the east of Parsonage Down, which is classed as earthworks.
- Repair and maintenance will take place on Saturday afternoons and Sundays.
Any other work outside core hours (other than emergencies) needs to be approved in advance by Wiltshire Council.
Will there be traffic and disruption during construction?
We’re not planning on shutting the A303 apart from very occasional overnight closures. We’ll signpost these closures well in advance, to make sure people who use the road at night know about the diversions.
How are you minimising disruption?
To help minimise the impact of construction, we are building what are known as temporary “haul roads” within the site boundary so that we can keep our construction vehicles mostly separate from normal traffic. The location of the haul roads will change as the project progresses. We will build a temporary bridge across the River Till to the south of the new road to avoid construction traffic using the A303 through Winterbourne Stoke. Agricultural traffic will be able to cross this haul road.
We recognise that inevitably there will be some degree of disruption and intrusion during construction. Most local residents should not be significantly affected, but there will be an impact for some people living in the closest houses in the northern edge of Winterbourne Stoke. We will keep this to the absolute minimum, and let local people know what is happening and when.