Between 2018 and 2020, Highways England (now National Highways) constructed a new motorway junction on the M49 at the Western Approach Distribution Park.

The new junction is needed to create direct access from Severnside and the wider Avonmouth Severnside Enterprise Area (ASEA) to the motorway network.

More information on this work is available on the National Highways website.

What we are doing

We are working with the Department for Transport and National Highways on the design and construction of a link road to connect the new motorway junction at Western Approach Distribution Park.

We are not able to share the project timetable yet, as design and land assembly processes are still at an early stage.

We will keep stakeholders and this page updated as the project progresses.

The work is being funded by the Department for Transport.

What it means

The new link road will mean that the investment already made by National Highways in the M49 junction is realised.

The benefits of the link road include helping to:

  • reduce congestion on local roads and the motorway
  • improve road safety
  • generate greater economic activity in Severnside and the wider ASEA

Other work in the area

Some of the roads within the enterprise area are unfinished and privately owned at present.

We are working with the developer to identify what work is required to bring the roads up to a suitable standard and enable us to take on responsibility for future maintenance.

The work will also require moving and improving of part of route 4 of the National Cycle Network.

Project updates

March 2023

A planning application has been submitted for the new M49 junction link road.

The Local Planning Authority has launched a public consultation, providing an opportunity for people to comment on the application. Go to our planning applications page and search application number P23/00268/F to view and comment on the application.

We have secured £7 million of funding from the Department for Transport to deliver the project and we are working closely with stakeholders to progress the new link road to the west of the M49 junction as quickly as possible.

Construction work is due to start on site later in 2023, but this timeframe could be subject to change and is dependent on the planning process and land ownership discussions. Construction is expected to last approximately 12 months.

We continue to work proactively with landowners to secure the land as quickly as possible. To achieve this Cabinet recently agreed progression of Compulsory Purchase Order processes at its meeting on 10 February, whilst the council continues with positive negotiations with the respective landowners.

You can read more on this in the cabinet report.

December 2022

Current work on the project includes working towards the consents needed for the new link road such as planning as well as other technical approvals.

A planning application is due to be submitted to the Local Planning Authority by the end of the year.

In order to build the link, we need to obtain privately owned land and we are currently working on this while progressing with the design of the new road.

A visualisation of the plans for the M49 Link Road

Detailed design work is in progress. Various surveys have been undertaken including topographical, ecological and ground radar surveys. A geotechnical study is underway, with ground investigation work due to start before the end of November.

Proposed road alignments and an alternative route for cycling and walking have been designed.

Construction work is due to start on site later next year, but this timeframe could be subject to change and is dependent on the planning process and land ownership discussions. Construction is expected to last approximately 12 months.

If you have any questions, please contact the project team at

November 2022

Find out more about plans for the new M49 Junction Link Road at a community engagement session in Pilning.

All are welcome to listen to a presentation and to look at the latest designs for the new link road, which will create direct access from the Severnside industrial and enterprise area to the motorway network.

It will also be a chance for you to meet the project manager, who will be on hand to answer any questions, and to talk through the project programme including the next steps.

The drop-in session is being hosted to ensure the public are kept informed ahead of the planning application being submitted.

The sessions is on Thursday 17 November between 4pm and 8pm at Pilning Village Hall, Cross Hands Road, Pilning, BS35 4JB.

No appointments are necessary. The presentation will be repeated throughout the session.

August 2022

Consultants have been appointed to support the project and prepare the planning application for the scheme. It is expected that a planning application will be submitted to the Local Planning Authority later in 2022.

Ecology surveys, design work and geotechnical work have all started and are making progress.

We need to acquire land from several landowners to be able to build the new link road and negotiations with the landowners are ongoing.
Further updates will follow.

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Keep updated

To stay up to date on the M49 link road project you can sign up to our Highway Improvements Newsletter.

Information and updates will also be posted on our Facebook and Twitter accounts.

You can also ask us a question by sending an email to

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