Disruption caused by the Botley Road closure ‘cannot be avoided’ the council has said- as commuters were confronted with travel chaos this morning.

Schools returned for the first day back since the arterial route into Oxford closed at the rail bridge on April 11.

Long delays were reported on several routes including the ring road in both directions.

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Oxfordshire County Council’s cabinet member for highway management Andrew Gant previously said: “As with any project of this scale, it will inevitably mean disruption – in this case the closure of Botley Road for two significant periods.

Oxford Mail:

“While this cannot be avoided, we will do all we can to minimise the impact on the rest of the road network.

“We will work closely with Network Rail and our other partners, such as the bus companies, to keep the city moving during this period.”

The road has been closed to allow for a multi-million-pound redevelopment of Oxford Station to take place.

The rail bridge is not due to open until October, with a closure planned for a similar period next year.

This morning, heavy traffic was reported on the A34 at the Hinskey Interchange and Iffley Road was also slow moving.


Several bus routes including the cityX1and X3 services were affected by the heavy traffic.

At around 9am, the AA reported delays of 32 minutes on the A4142 westbound between A4142 and A34.

Last week before the schools went back, Mr Gant suggested in a public social media post that the closure had been going ‘really well’ so far.


He said: “Only anecdotal of course but so far, a lot of cooperation and this is working really well.

“My thanks to everybody who is taking the trouble to brief themselves and find out what is going on and to all the marshals and staff who are keeping things flowing here.

“The big test will be next week when schools and university students come back to Oxford.

“But so far this seems to be going well.”

Oxford hotelier Jeremy Mogford has hit out at the council over the traffic on the roads around Oxford this morning.

He said: “I think this is the first sign of the repercussions of the county council’s transport policy.

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“The LTNs have changed the whole dynamic of how traffic works in Oxford and now we have to add in the Botley Road closure.

“I’m sure the city could have coped otherwise, if these changes had not been implemented.

“We have always had in the back of our minds that at some point we would need to redo the rail bridge and having to change infrastructure happens a lot in cities.

“I am now very fearful of what is going to happen to the city and not just for businesses.”

Oxfordshire County Council has been approached for comment on the traffic delays this morning.

A council spokesman said: “We continue to carefully monitor the Botley Road and the impact of the closure on the rest of the road system in Oxford.

“The schools are now back and traffic levels are higher.

“We’ll continue to assess the situation over a number of days and weeks.

“Incidents today (Tuesday) on the A40 and A34 interchange also added to pressure on the traffic network.”