Tyne Tunnel confirms weekend closure for maintenance but old toll booths will remain

The Tyne Tunnel has been causing traffic chaos The Tyne Tunnel has been causing traffic chaos
The Tyne Tunnel has been causing traffic chaos
One of the tunnels will be shut from Friday to Monday, the other will remain open

There could be traffic chaos on Tyneside this weekend as the Tyne Tunnel confirms it will be partly closed from Friday until Monday.

The Northbound Tyne Tunnel will shut at 10 pm on Friday, December 3 and remain closed until Monday, December 6 at 5 am.

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Members of the public will still be able to cross the Tyne Tunnel in both directions.

The Southbound tunnel will operate on a bi-directional system during the closure.

That means traffic driving south will travel in a single lane to accommodate northbound users in the other single lane.

Users are being asked to follow diversion signs and the Tyne Tunnel operators have apologised for any inconvenience caused.

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In a Tweet on Wednesday the Tunnel confirmed the closure was for "maintenance works inside the tunnel".

Commuters may have hoped the work would see the removal of leftover toll booths, however that project won't be completed until the Spring of next year.

A Tweet read: "We are beginning to demolish the toll booth structure in the coming weeks making the road wider so there will be less cars slowing down.

"Because of the free-flowing traffic we cannot have another lane open, however we expect to see improvements in queues as we progress."

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The Tyne Tunnel moved to a cashless system at the start of November, meaning drivers must now pay in advance of travelling or by midnight the day after.

It means the old toll booths are no longer needed but, since they are still in place, they are adding to traffic queues and user confusion.

Newcastle World recently reported that the Tyne Tunnel made £20,500 from surplus cash payments last year.

That money was generated by drivers not having the exact cash to pay the £1.90 crossing fee and putting in too much money with toll booths not offering change.

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