A concept design by Lancashire County Council’s highways engineers to greatly improve the traffic flow in, out, and around Rawtenstall, has been approved at the first stage by Rossendale Council.

The Gyratory System (​a large and complex roundabout) scheme around St Mary’s Way and the surrounding roads will massively ease the traffic congestion reducing waiting times and making journey times through the town shorter.

Improved safety for pedestrians and cyclists is also a major consideration of the changes with the latest hi tech equipment being used on signal upgrades and crossings.

The expected increase in Rossendale’s population by 2035 and the greater volume of traffic has been addressed by the plans to make the Gyratory System fit for purpose.

One major move is the infilling of the unused subway allowing more space for pedestrians and cyclists.

Work is expected to begin in January 2025 and completed by March 2026.

Rossendale Council successfully secured the funding in April 2023 from the Capital Regeneration Project supported by Levelling Up and appointed Lancashire County Council to develop the concept design.

Several options have been appraised to arrive at this scheme, which has been modelled by senior highways engineers at Lancashire County Council.

Further detailed development of the design will now be undertaken prior to a planning application being submitted.

Generally, the scheme includes:

  • Addressing the lane balance issues and installing a second lane on the A682 southbound exit leading to the M66
  • Amending signal staging to directly improve traffic flows
  • A general overview of lane layouts, road markings and traffic signs
  • Targeted carriageway widening and additional lanes

On the A681 Haslingden Road a new set-back signalised crossing will improve the link to St Mary’s Chambers and areas to the north of the gyratory.

At the A682 Rawtenstall Spur there will be a realigning of the exit from the gyratory to allow two running lanes, as well as realigning the central island and the entry to the gyratory to a widened three-lane approach.

Bury Road signal changes will be made to provide safer exit from Bury Road while a new set-back signalised crossing will improve the link to east of the gyratory, bus station and Rawtenstall Market.

It is proposed to widen the carriageway in front of the fire station to provide a dedicated turning right lane to remove blockage from lanes heading to Rawtenstall Spur, while the left turn lane to Bocholt Way will be extended.

A full signal upgrade will take place at the Asda junction improving links to adjacent signal junctions. There will also be new crossing facilities on Bank Street.

Similar signal upgrades will improve links to adjacent signal junctions at the Tup Bridge Junction (Haslingden Old Road, Newchurch Road) with a new controlled crossing on the north arm of Burnley Road.

The gyratory system project is co-ordinated under the umbrella of the Rawtenstall Masterplan, which is jointly funded by Rossendale Council and Lancashire County Council.

The masterplan co-ordinates many other projects across Rawtenstall, including the Lancashire County Council’s St Mary’s Bus Gate which is funded by Lancashire County Council’s Bus Service Improvement Plan.

The gyratory proposals can be viewed in detail on Rossendale Council’s website https://bit.ly/gyratoryRBC

The public can also see the plans and talk to relevant officers on:

  • Thursday, February 15, 11am-2pm at Rawtenstall Market
  • Thursday, February 22, 4pm-7pm at Rawtenstall Library