A605 Thorpe Waterville
Added on 12 July 2018
Response to letter to NCC re residents' concerns
Thank you for your letter regarding concerns leaving the village to turn right towards Thrapston.
The A605 is one of the busiest single carriageway roads in the County, and I can certainly appreciate that it will be difficult to turn right at certain times of day, depending on the traffic flow.
I do understand the frustration felt when having to wait for a gap in both directions on such a busy road, especially if it is something that has to be done on a daily basis. Unfortunately in the short term there is little that can be offered to improve matters. The speed limit on the A605 was considered last year, and the panel concluded that 40mph was an appropriate speed limit for this section of road, given the limited frontage development on both sides of the A605 itself. In reality if the limit was lowered I doubt most drivers would adhere to the lower limit and it may potentially make the junction more dangerous, if drivers trying to exit the village assume traffic will be travelling at 30mph when in fact most vehicles are travelling at faster speeds. This is in common with most other junctions onto the road, including those from Titchmarsh, Barnwell and Cotterstock/Tansor, as well as similar junctions across the County.
Although signalisation or a roundabout would offer a better opportunity for exiting the village (subject to traffic flow with a roundabout, as traffic from the right would still have priority) I feel that there is currently little prospect of such an improvement being likely in the near future. In general this kind of measure is most likely to be considered either where there is a significant congestion issue affecting large numbers of vehicles or, perhaps more commonly, to facilitate a development which would make a significant contribution to the costs. Unfortunately at this stage I do not anticipate this type of scheme coming forward that might improve matters for residents at this junction. I am sorry that I cannot offer a more positive response.
I am aware that there has a longer term aim to upgrade the A605 between Thrapston and the County Boundary, which was included in Major Roads Review Cabinet Report in January 2016 . The specific comments about the A605 were in the report and Appendix respectively were:
5.5 Category 4 - Schemes which can be developed at a future date, as other higher priority schemes progress to construction.
(a) Highways England schemes
• M1 J14 to J19 possible widening
• A14 upgrade to Motorway
• A43/A45 Expressway/Smart Corridor Upgrade
• A5/A422 Old Stratford Roundabout
(d) NCC schemes
• A6 Rushden Improvements
• A43 Corby to Stamford Improvements
• A508 Improvements (M1 J15 to A5)
• A508 Boughton to Brixworth Improvements
• A605 Improvements
A605 Improvements – Current (2012) flows are over 18,000 at Warmington and 16,600 at Barnwell. By 2026 these will reach 28,000 and 22,000 respectively, and by 2040 37,000 and 28,000. The route carries a very high level of HGVs, reflecting its use as a link between the A14 and A1. While there are similar concerns about this high level of growth to those for the A43, the baseline flows are higher. They indicate that the initial priority for dualling would be the section from Oundle to the A1, followed by the section from Thrapston to Oundle. However, there are likely to be some not insignificant environmental issues due to the location of the road in the Nene valley.
Obviously recent developments will bring about changes to local authorities in Northamptonshire and so it is difficult to know at this stage how or when this kind of scheme may proceed.