A familiar and distinctive part of the city’s street scene is set to be consigned to the history books.

After nearly 30 years in operation the removal of the “tidal” traffic management system on the A61 London Road-Queens Road is underway.

The overhead gantries and signs that control the number of in and out-bound lanes through the Heeley area have become increasingly unreliable and costly to maintain.

Through the Streets Ahead highway maintenance contract, Amey will remove the gantries and change the layout of the Wolseley Road junction to establish two full-time inbound and outbound lanes on Queens Road.

In addition, traffic lights at the junctions with Jersey Road, Myrtle Road and Alderson Road will be upgraded and the road surface improved to achieve more consistent journey times.

The first phase of work will begin on Sunday 23 June when lane closures will be in place on Queens Road from 7am to 7pm between Broadfield Road to Alderson Road to allow Amey to mark out the new road layout.

The following weekend (Saturday 29 June to Monday 1 July) London Road, Queens Road and Wolseley Road will be subject to rolling road closures each day between Little London Road and Alderson Road whilst the overhead gantries are removed.

Traffic signs will be in place to advise motorists of diversions and timings.

The final phase of the work is then planned to take place during the school holidays when Queens Road, from Charlotte Road to Broadfield Road, is resurfaced. Exact dates for this phase of the work will be confirmed in coming weeks.

Cabinet member for transport and development at Sheffield City council, Councillor Bob Johnson said:

“The A61 is a major access route into the city and is used by thousands of commuters and locals every day. It’s also lined with numerous businesses and retail venues.

“The overhead gantries on this stretch of road have been operating now for over 30 years but are no longer fit for purpose.

“The tidal system has not always been reliable and comes with high maintenance costs. Therefore, the council will benefit from reduced maintenance costs as a result of the new scheme.

“As well as making journey times more consistent for regular users, the new layout will enhance the potential for further development of nearby business areas, previously restricted by the tidal flow arrangement.

“In addition, it will be easier for people to cross at the busy London Road-Queens Road-Wolseley Road junction.

“We appreciate that road improvement schemes can be frustrating but we will make every effort to reduce disruption, working closely with our partner organisations and those directly affected, to ensure the scheme is delivered as efficiently as possible.”

A cabinet decision to endorse Amey’s proposals was taken back in February this year. http://democracy.sheffield.gov.uk/ieDecisionDetails.aspx?Id=2244

The scheme is set to be fully completed in early September and suitable diversions will be in place during the works.

All dates and times are subject to change and are heavily dependent on weather and other influencing factors.

The phases of work and intended timescales are as follows:

1. Installation of ducting in road and pavement plus the refurbishment of traffic signals from  Edmund Road to Broadfield Road

Underway now, 8pm – 6am with lane closures

Pavement work between 9.30am – 3pm with pedestrian access maintained

Some Sunday work may be required.

2. Installation of temporary (then permanent) new traffic island at junction of Queens Road and London Road. New road markings between Alderson Road to Broadfield Road

Sunday 23 June

Lane closures 7am – 7pm

3. Removal of existing overhead gantries and signage from Alderson Road to Little London Road.

Weekend 29 June – 1 July

Rolling road closures London Road, Little London Road, Queens Road, Wolseley Road 7pm – 5am

4. Road resurfacing – Charlotte Road to Broadfield Road

Start date to be confirmed.