M25 reopened eight hours ahead of schedule

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By journalsofus.com

Work on a section of the M25 has finished and the road has reopened eight hours earlier than scheduled – ahead of Monday’s rush hour.

The “unprecedented” day-long closure of one of the country’s busiest parts came into force at 21:00 GMT on Friday.

The five-mile stretch was scheduled to remain closed until 06:00 Monday morning.

But just after 22:00 on Sunday, National Highways South-East said the road was open in both directions following the demolition of the Clearmount bridge.

Drivers were warned to avoid traveling on this stretch of motorway at the weekend and there were fears there would be major delays and long wait times.

But National Highways Project chief Jonathan Wade said drivers “followed our advice, reducing traffic levels by more than 50% and meaning about 30 minutes were added to journeys.”

He said he was happy that the work was completed quickly.

“Thank you to everyone for their cooperation in making work on this major project to make travel safer and reduce pollution easier.”

The National Highways said it was the first of five closures between now and September and that the date of the next one would be announced “very soon to give people as much notice as possible”. The work is part of a £317 million upgrade of the motorway.

The carriageway was closed between and around junctions 10 and 11. Ahead of the weekend people were told to only use the M25 if “absolutely essential”.

The National Highways said the carriageway between junctions 9 and 11 carries 4,000 to 6,000 vehicles per hour in each direction between 10:00 and 21:00 on weekends.

This weekend’s works led to the first daytime closure of the M25 – which circles London – since it opened in 1986.

An 11.5-mile diversion route was created to direct traffic onto A roads; While some locals took to the empty motorway to take selfies.

Woking Borough Council’s Amanda Boothe told the PA news agency: “It’s actually been better than we expected, it hasn’t been as clogged up as we thought it would be.

“It was built up a bit, but it’s no different to what it might normally be like. Actually the residents are quite happy, they’re sleeping well because it’s very quiet all night long.”

The M25 will be closed for four days until September.

The project, due to be completed in summer 2025, will increase the number of lanes at Junction 10, one of the UK’s busiest and most dangerous motorway junctions.

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