M1 Junctions 39-42: Smart Motorway
Part of our programme of improvements (value >10m)
What to do if you break down on a smart motorway
Find out more about what to do if you break down on a smart motorway and other useful information.
A new approach to delivering road works
This project is taking part in a trial to make road works simpler and clearer for people to drive through.
M1 junction 39 to 42 smart motorway
For more information about the scheme please visit the about page.
M1 junction 39 to 42 central reserve works
We need to replace the existing central reserve barrier with a concrete step barrier between junctions 39 and 42. These works have already begun; find out more on the Journey Impact page.
Public information construction exhibition
We held a public information construction exhibition on the 8th and 9th November. The scheme boards displayed are availabe to view on the Publications page.
What is happening?
We are improving the M1 by making it a smart motorway between junctions 39 and 42. Smart motorways help relieve congestion by using technology to vary speed limits. They also allow the hard shoulder to be fully converted to a running lane to create additional capacity. They deliver these benefits at a significantly lower cost than conventional motorway widening and with less impact on the environment during construction.
When and where is this happening?
The smart motorway scheme is being carried out between junction 39 and 42 of the M1.
Why is this happening and what will it cost?
The M1 motorway is a strategic route for local, regional and international traffic, and plays a major role as a national artery providing a direct motorway route between the north and the south. It is also a major inter-urban regional route connecting two major conurbations and providing access to two important international gateways.
It carries in excess of 113,000 vehicles a day, of which 25% are HGVs. Congestion is already a serious problem and, based on national road traffic forecasts, the extent and severity of congestion is expected to significantly increase over the next 15 to 20 years.
* The estimated final outturn of £120 million was approved by the Secretary of State in October 2013 prior to the start of construction in October 2013.
How will the scheme be carried out?
A number of cameras, information signs and signals on gantries will be installed as part of the improvement scheme. As the scheme design progresses we will provide more information on the location of these features.
Using our knowledge of operating the M42 and M6 smart motorway schemes we have developed the smart motorway concept. The design of the M1 junctions 39 to 42 smart motorway will include the following features compared to previous smart motorway scheme.
- fully converting the hard shoulder
- fewer overhead gantries which span the whole motorway motorway, although the dedicated cameras required for opening and closing the hard shoulder are no longer required
- increased space between emergency refuge areas
Signs and signals will still be used to inform drivers of conditions on the network and when variable speed limits are in place.
What are the benefits?
This project will relieve congestion and smooth the flow of the traffic, improving safety and journey times. These benefits will also support economic development in the region.
We already have evidence of the benefits that a smart motorway scheme can bring. The first smart motorway scheme opened to traffic on the M42 motorway in 2006. Recent analysis of the data gathered since opening has found that journey time reliability improved by 22% and reduced emissions by up to 10% due to traffic flowing more smoothly.
In addition, personal injury accidents have reduced by more than half (55.7%) since hard shoulder running was introduced. There was also an overall reduction in the severity of accidents with zero fatalities and fewer seriously injured.
How do I find out more information ?
More information will be posted on this project page as it becomes available. You can subscribe to be alerted when updates are made.
If you have any queries about this project you should contact the Highways Agency Information Line by emailing email@example.com or calling 0300 123 5000.
To contact the team directly you can email: m1J39-42SmartMotorway@highwaysengland.co.uk
Will there be roadworks?
Yes, roadworks will be required to carry out the works safely.
Forthcoming closures are listed below. Works are weather dependant and may have to be cancelled at short notice. Diversion timings are approximate and act as a guideline only. This information is not updated in real time; check Traffic England for current traffic conditions.
|Date||Duration||Details||Allow an Extra|
|26th November 2015||8pm to 6am||Full road closure junction 41 to 42 Northbound||20 - 25 mins|
|26th November 2015||8pm to 6am||Junction 42 southbound free flow entry slip closed||5 mins|
|26th November 2015||8pm to 6am||Junction 39 Southbound exit slip closed||15 - 20 mins|
|27th November 2015||8pm to 6am||Full road closure Junction 40 to 41 Northbound||20 - 25 mins|
|28th November 2015||8pm to 6am||Full road closure Junction 41 to 42 Northbound||20 - 25 mins|
|28th November 2015||8pm to 6am||Junction 40 Southbound exit slip closed||15 - 20 mins|
|29th November 2015||8pm to 6am||Full road closure Junction 41 to 42 Northbound||20 - 25 mins|
|30th November 2015||8pm to 6am||Full road closure Junction 41 to 42 Northbound||20 - 25 mins|
|1st December 2015||8pm to 6am||Full road closure Junction 41 to 42 Northbound||20 - 25 mins|
|1st December 2015||8pm to 6am||Full road closure Junction 41 to 40 Southbound||30 - 35 mins|
|2nd December 2015||8pm to 6am||Full road closure Junction 40 to 41 Northbound||30 - 35 mins|
|2nd December 2015||8pm to 6am||Full road closure Junction 40 to 39 Southbound||30 - 35 mins|
|3rd December 2015||8pm to 6am||Full road closure Junction 42 to 41 Southbound including J29 westbound to M1 Southbound free flow link||20 - 25 mins|
|3rd December 2015||8pm to 6am||Junction 39 Southbound entry slip closed||15 - 20 mins|
|4th December 2015||8pm to 6am||Full road closure Junction 39 to 40 Northbound||30 - 35 mins|
|4th December 2015||8pm to 6am||Full road closure Junction 42 to 41 Southbound including J29 westbound to M1 Southbound free flow link||20 - 25 mins|
|5th December 2015||8pm to 6am||Full road closure Junction 41 to 40 Southbound||30 - 35 mins|
How will you manage traffic?
Hard shoulder closures, narrower lanes and safety barriers are in place so we can carry out our works safely while maintaining three lanes in both directions.
We have implemented a 50mph speed restriction for the safety of drivers and our road workers. This may seem frustrating, but driving through half a mile of roadworks at 50mph takes just ten seconds more than at 70mph, while greatly increasing safety.
Will there be diversions?
Clearly signed diversions will be in place.
- northbound traffic leaving 39 for junction 40 will be diverted via the A636, A6186, A61 & A638
- northbound traffic leaving 40 for junction 41 will be diverted via the A638, B6128 & A650
- soutbound traffic leaving at 41 for junction 40 will be diverted via the A650, B6128 & A638
- southbound traffic leaving at 40 for junction 39 will be diverted via the A638, A61, A16186 & A636
- northbound traffic leaving at 41 for junction 42 should follow A650 to M62 and join at junction 28, leave at junction 29 to rejoin M1 at junction 42
- southbound traffic leaving at 42 for junction 41 should join the M62 at junction 29, leave at 28 join the A650 to rejoin the M1 at junction 41
Business Case - Information correct as at December 2010
Public exhibition material for the M1 J39 to J42 Smart Motorway scheme.
M1 J39 to J42 Managed Motorway - Information Leaflet - October 2013
M1 J39 to J42 Managed Motorway - Information Leaflet - January 2013
M1 J39 to J42 Managed Motorway - Public Exhibition Poster - January 2013
Environmental Impact Assessment Notice of Determination for the M1 J39 to 42 Managed Motorway Scheme.
M1 - junctions 39 to 42 statutory instrument
Environmental Assessment Report (EAR) for the M1 J39 to J42 Managed Motorway Scheme.