McDonald’s filter lane delayed again

The filter-lane scheme was originally held up by works to the A1 bridge. Picture by Jane Coltman
The filter-lane scheme was originally held up by works to the A1 bridge. Picture by Jane Coltman
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The construction of a filter lane on the A1 slip road, which is linked to last year’s opening of McDonald’s in Alnwick, is set to be delayed for a third time.

As part of the planning permission for the fast-food development to the south of the town, Northumberland County Council required the developers to provide a ghost right-turn lane (third lane) on the nearby A1 slip road.

This means that traffic heading to Shilbottle, the drive-thru restaurant or the other businesses and facilities at Cawledge will have a separate lane to turn right so that traffic accessing the A1 southbound is not impeded.

When the application was approved in November 2014, this condition required the lane to be implemented before the outlet could open.

However, in early 2015, the fast-food giant applied to vary this condition due to the works being carried out by Highways England on the A1 bridge, which lasted from February to October 2015.

The variation allowed six months from when McDonald’s started trading to complete the works. Given the outlet’s opening in late September 2015, the end of March this year would have been the deadline.

But, as we reported in April, the corporation applied once more to extend the time limit by six months.

And now, another extension has been applied for, which will give McDonald’s until the end of March 2017 to complete the work.

A company spokesman explained that since the initial delay for the bridge works, the county council and Highways England ‘have been carrying out the necessary safety audits and departure reports’.

“We are continuing to work with both parties to try to get the filter lane created,” he added.