The Motorway Archive
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What is the Motorway Archive?
Work on developing the UK Motorway system, which transformed British travel, started in the mid-1950s. The Motorway Archive celebrates the engineering achievement involved in the conception, planning, design and construction of this transport network by thousands of dedicated professionals. The Archive itself is a collection of as many of the documents and artefacts, which were associated with the development, as it has been possible to find. From this wealth of material has come the story of each motorway developed in Britain over the last 50 years. This is the story of one of them.

Region: Northern Ireland

M5 Greencastle to Rush Park

The last substantial motorway contract in the 1970s was for the 1.5 miles long M5 between Greencastle and Rush Park. in Newtownabbey.

It had been intended that the M5 should run from Greencastle to near Carrickfergus but after a public inquiry the outer portion was abandoned and the motorway was terminated at Rush Park where it was joined into a section of the A2 Belfast to Carrickfergus Road, which was made dual carriageway as part of the same contract.

Much of the motorway portion is on embankment over a shallow lagoon with culverts to permit ingress of water at high tide. The contract, which was carried out by JMJ, included about 1.5 mile of motorway and a 0.7 mile length of all purpose dual carriageway. It was opened to traffic on 12 September 1980. The scheme was prepared and supervised by Works Division.

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