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Details of major roadwork scheme on the A299 New Thanet Way between Whitstable and Herne Bay revealed

Highways chiefs have confirmed plans for a huge set of roadworks along a major route linking two Kent towns.

A contraflow system and 40mph restrictions will be in place on the New Thanet Way between Herne Bay and Whitstable for two months while work is carried out to upgrade the lights in the Chestfield Tunnel.

Work on the New Thanet Way between Herne Bay and Whitstable will take place for two months
Work on the New Thanet Way between Herne Bay and Whitstable will take place for two months

Kent County Council had initially wanted to reconstruct the carriageway at the same time - which would have seen the road shut in alternate directions between the end of April and the end of June.

But in the wake of warnings the closures would have caused traffic chaos, the project was shelved.

Senior county councillor David Brazier says the authority has "listened to people and understood the disruption that these planned, yet essential, maintenance works would cause".

"The lighting replacement in the Chestfield Tunnel needs to happen urgently so we can guarantee the safety of those using it going forward," he said.

"While we had hoped to get the road reconstruction works completed at the same time as the lighting upgrade, the extent of the work is too great to be completed in this timeframe, meaning we will have to revisit at a later date."

County council chiefs say the existing lighting system in the Chestfield Tunnel needs to be replaced as it uses fluorescent lamps, which will no longer be available after August.

The authority is planning to replace the lights and the support system with LED technology.

The work to overhaul will begin on April 24 and is due to be completed by the end of June.

A contraflow will be in place eastbound until May 26, before being switched to the westbound carriageway for four weeks starting from May 30.

Two complete overnight closures - each over two nights - will also be required.

Authority officials say the deep carriageway reconstruction repairs will be scheduled for a date to be confirmed.

The project is intended to strengthen the subsoil below the road, which has expanded and contracted due to fluctuating temperatures.

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