Operation Brock has been replaced with a new, more efficient, road management solution.
Old plans to separate HGV’s and regular traffic with metal barriers, requiring major M20 closures and resulting in motorists being brought to a standstill, have been scrapped and replaced with new plans to install movable concrete barriers. The new plans promise to keep the M20 open whilst retaining three lanes, a hard shoulder and its regular 70mph speed limit in both directions.
Where Operation Brock required a month’s worth of overnight closures for installation, new plans only require a few hours to put-together, removing the amount of unnecessary delays that Operation Brock would have caused.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps stated:
"After listening to frustrated residents and businesses affected by Operations Brock and Stack, we've invested in a new solution to boost Kent's resilience and keep its vital road network moving, even at times of disruption."
Whilst the new plans come as a welcome innovation to many, there was still some disparity surrounding the amount of money spent on developing the original barriers when the movable barrier technology was readily available. However, Highways England noted that:
“Quick Moveable Barrier technology was considered, however, we were unable to guarantee procurement time for 29 March 2019, when such a solution would have been required as part of the UK’s departure from the EU under no-deal contingency planning.”
Moveable barriers are already used in other cities around the world and hopefully the new technology will act as a long-term replacment to Operation Brock and Stack.