M11 Junction 8 improvements scheme works progress update

Progress Update

Works on Birchanger Lane and A120 continue to progress as part of the M11 Junction 8 improvements scheme.

Phase 1 of Birchanger Lane has now been completed with the installation of new drainage and footpaths. The standard capping beams on the A120 have now been completed with only the 2 sloped capping beams remaining.

Phase 2 is currently in progress which involves the construction of the new section of road that will connect Birchanger Lane to the new junction.

More information is available in the recent Project Update newsletter produced by the contractor John Sisk & Son.

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M11 Junction 8 Improvements

Works notice

A120 Roundabout Birchanger Lane closure and Birchwood parking restrictions – from 3rd November until Spring 2023

From the 3rd November, the A120 Roundabout exit onto and off Birchanger Lane will be closed to vehicles, except for access.

This is to allow for the installation of new drainage, kerbing, and pavements as part of re-alignment of Birchanger Lane as part of the wider M11 Junction 8 Improvement scheme.

The closure will be in place until Spring 2023. During this time, bus stops and services along this route will be diverted with buses using Birchwood in Birchanger Village to turn around and head northbound on Birchanger Lane. To enable this, a parking restriction has been implemented on Birchwood for the duration of the works.

All updates on these works will be posted on this page and you can read more about the completed and planned works in the contractor newsletter at the bottom of this page. For queries you can contact the project team at m11J8@essexhighways.org.

Works carried out by National Highways

National Highways are carrying out essential repairs and resurfacing works on the M11 junction 8 Birchanger Green Roundabout bridges, which will ensure the bridges continue to remain in a safe and serviceable condition.

These works are separate to those being carried out on the M11 Junction 8 Improvements scheme by the contractor John Sisk & Son.

Details on the works by National Highways can be found here: M11 Birchanger Green Roundabout, north and south bridges - Highways England (nationalhighways.co.uk). You can also contact National Highways via email at info@nationalhighways.co.uk or by phone at 0300 123 5000.

What is happening?

The area around Junction 8 of the M11 is increasingly congested and lacking capacity at peak times. Planned developments in the north of Bishop’s Stortford and local growth planned in East Herts and Uttlesford will lead to an increasing amount of traffic using the junctions in the years ahead as London Stansted Airport continues to grow.

Since 2015, we have been investigating improvements to the A120 and slip road access to Junction 8 of the M11. Our studies showed that the best short- to medium-term solution would be to improve off-slip lane capacity onto Junction 8 of the M11 with a widened A120 signalised junction, to help meet future network demand.

Following a successful bid in 2017 for the Department for Transport’s National Productivity Investment Fund, we are now in a position to move forward with our plans to improve Junction 8 of the M11 and A120 West. 

The scheme will:

  • Improve access between the M11 and A120 with London Stansted Airport, Bishop's Stortford, Birchanger Services and Takeley
  • Reduce congestion and improve capacity on the M11 Junction 8 exit slips and the A120
  • Support future plans for housing, employment and business developments

John Sisk & Son was appointed as contractor for the scheme in August 2021, with investigation works starting on site in September 2021.

It is currently anticipated that construction will take approximately 18 months to be completed because certain works on the motorway network and the Essex County Council network cannot be constructed at the same time, to help mitigate the level of disruption.

The latest information about the scheme and regular progress updates will be posted on this webpage. 

We are doing all we can to minimise traffic disruption and apologise in advance for any inconvenience our works may cause.

If you have any questions about the construction works, please contact the John Sisk & Son construction team on 07442981580. Alternatively, if you have questions about the scheme, please contact Essex County Council at m11J8@essexhighways.org.

What is planned?

South-west of M11 Junction 8

  • Add an additional approach lane from the M11 Junction 8 northbound exit slip onto the A120, with dedicated access into Birchanger Green Services, to increase capacity and reduce queuing
  • Install upgraded traffic signals to better manage traffic and reduce queuing on the slip road

North-east of M11 Junction 8

  • Add an additional approach lane on the M11 Southbound slip road to separate traffic to Stansted Airport, the A120, Takeley, motorway services, and Bishop’s Stortford
  • Upgrade traffic signals and overhead signage to improve traffic movement
South-west of M11 Junction 8
North-east of M11 Junction 8

West of M11 Junction 8 / Junction of A120 with A1250 (Dunmow Road) - (Updated 23/01/19)

  • Replace the existing A120/A1250 (Dunmow Road) roundabout with a signalised junction to address congestion issues and meet forecast traffic demand up to 2036.
  • Widen the A120 eastbound and westbound to three lanes on the approach to the new junction with the A1250 and introduce a dedicated lane westbound for A1250 traffic as well as a new right-turn lane for traffic for Birchanger Lane.
  • Realign Birchanger Lane at the new A120 junction within the highway boundary and a safe staggered distance between the A1250.
  • The revised highways layout will enable the full range of traffic movements in and out of Birchanger village to be retained as the realignment of Birchanger Lane will allow direct traffic towards A1250 Bishop’s Stortford and the A120 west with a single traffic signal phase for all movements.
  • Traffic from Birchanger village will not have to use the route via the M11 Junction 8 roundabout, as initially proposed, and the realignment of Birchanger Lane should not impact the junction’s effectiveness in the short-term.
  • Create a new footway to Birchanger village with on-road cycleway to improve facilities for people who walk and cycle. This will provide improved connections to the National Cycle Network (NCN).
  • Install toucan crossings to connect both sides of the A120 to allow people who walk and cycle to pass more safely between Birchanger Lane and the A1250 Dunmow Road.
  • To improve safety, the crossing points on the Junction 8 slip roads will be removed. Non-motorised users can instead use the recently upgraded bridleway overbridge to the north and underpass to the south of Junction 8.
  • Install a new crossing for pedestrians to make access to bus stops safer on A1250 Dunmow Road.
West of M11 Junction 8 / Junction of A120 with A1250 (Dunmow Road) - (Updated 23/01/19)
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