Five Ways underpass closure

Duration: Mon 03 Jun 2019 (ongoing)
Location: West Midlands


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What’s happening?

Five Ways underpass will close to all traffic from Monday 3 June 2019 to allow for the construction of the next phase of the Birmingham Westside Metro extension which, when complete, will transform public transport access between the city centre and Edgbaston. The underpass will remain closed until 2021.

During construction, Five Ways roundabout, which runs above the underpass, will remain open in all directions to provide access in and out of Birmingham city centre. Pedestrian and cyclist access through Five Ways subway will be open as usual.

Later this summer there will be additional changes to road traffic access to Broad Street and changes to some bus routes including route and stop changes.

Key travel advice

You’ll still be able to get to where you need to go during the closure, but consider the following advice:

  • Plan ahead and leave more time for your journey: If you travel along Hagley Road, you’ll need more time for your journey to take account of the closure at Five Ways underpass.
  • Use public transport wherever possible: This is to reduce congestion on key roads in and out of the city centre.
  • Travel off peak: Roads will be quieter if you are able to travel off peak. The busiest time to travel during weekdays is usually before 09.30 and after 15.30.
  • Think about your options: Five Ways roundabout remains open, as does the pedestrian and cyclist subway, but both will be busier than normal so consider using Google Maps or a GPS to plan an alternative route.
  • Consider car sharing: Sharing your journey with friends, family or colleagues will reduce the amount of cars on the road.
  • If you work, speak to your employer about whether there is any flexibility in your hours or if there are any times when you could avoid travelling altogether, such as working from home.

Travelling by bus

We’re working with Birmingham City Council and Midland Metro Alliance to give bus passengers priority and keep people moving while the work takes place. Temporary changes to roads and road junctions are being introduced on Hagley Road and the Five Ways area to keep people moving. This includes creating new bus lanes and giving buses priority at lights.

During the closure, bus services 9, 12, 12A, 13, 13A, 13B, 126, X8 and X10 which currently use the Five Ways underpass will be diverted via Five Ways roundabout. 

This means you will need to leave more time for your journeys.

Top tip: Plan ahead using our journey planner and remember to check your journey again later this summer when further changes to Broad Street are introduced. To be notified when this page is updated, sign up here.

Travelling by train

Rail stations on the Stourbridge-Birmingham line may be a good way to travel during the closure depending where you need to go and at what time. More seats are available on trains that arrive into Birmingham Snow Hill after 09:15 and on trains that leave Snow Hill before 16:00 or after 18:30 so you may want to consider working from home or travelling off-peak if possible.

Some services on the Stourbridge-Birmingham line may be busier during this period so always leave more time for your journey.

Top tip: Check which train services have available seats using West Midlands Trains ‘Travel More Comfortably’ posters. Plan ahead at www.nationalrail.co.uk.

Travelling by Metro

If you are travelling from Sandwell, the Metro could be a good way to travel. Fast and frequent services arrive into Birmingham every 6 minutes.

Top tip:  There are 550 free car parking spaces located at four stops on the Metro line between Birmingham and Wolverhampton, view them here.

Advice if you drive

The Five Ways roundabout remains open however will be busier than normal. If you currently use this route there may be additional delays, so please leave more time.

There are lots of improvement works taking place across the West Midlands, so checking your journey before you leave each day and using different routes may help you to avoid delays while the underpass is closed.

We’ve listed some of the routes you could try below, you can also view these in a map. Not every journey is covered but apps such as Google Maps, which use real-time information, will help you pick the quickest route each day.

  • Travelling from Bearwood
    Consider using City Road and Dudley Road, past City Hospital to head into Birmingham city centre or connect with the ring road. 
  • Travelling from Oldbury, Langley, Londonderry
    Head towards Smethwick and take the A457, continue towards Birmingham via the Dudley Road past City Hospital. 
  • Travelling from Rowley Regis, Blackheath, Halesowen or Stourbridge
    Consider using the motorway network to avoid Hagley Road. If you are travelling into the city centre, consider travelling via Quinton and Harborne or turning off Hagley Road at Monument Road to avoid Five Ways.
  • Travelling from Worcester, Kidderminster or the M5
    Consider using M5 J4 and follow the Bristol Road into Birmingham city centre.

Please note: Improvement work is taking place at Selly Oak New Road until summer 2020, leave more time for your journey.

Top tip: Major repair work is taking place on the M5 at Junctions 1 & 2 until autumn 2019. With reduced speed restrictions in place you will need to leave more time for your journey or if you can, travel off peak.

Top tip: Fast and frequent train services arrive into Birmingham city centre from nearby rail stations every few minutes during peak times. Could you catch a bus to your nearest train station? Plan ahead.

Top tip: The number 82 serves Bearwood and avoids Five Ways and Hagley Road so travelling by bus could be a good alternative to driving. Check the route here.

If you walk or cycle

The pedestrian subway at Five Ways will remain open as usual while the work takes place. This includes ramped access and it is also possible to cycle through here.

Top tip: There are thousands of free cycle storage spaces at Rowley Regis, Longbridge, Selly Oak and Stourbridge Junction rail stations, plan a safe cycling route here.

Find out more

For up-to-the-minute travel information and help planning your journey, please follow us on Twitter @networkwm or check your journey with the operators below. To be notified when this page is updated, sign up here.

National Express: www.nxbus.co.uk or @nxwestmidlands
West Midlands Trains: www.westmidlandsrailway.co.uk or @westmidrailway
National Rail www.nationalrail.co.uk  or @nationalrailenq
Metro: www.westmidlandsmetro.com or @wmmetro

For more information and project updates relating to the Metro extension, please visit, the Midland Metro Alliance’s website: www.metroalliance.co.uk

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