|Length:||2.4 mi (3.9 km)|
|History:||Construction completed 1995|
The A555 road is a short route in Greater Manchester, United Kingdom, but straddling the border with Cheshire. It is officially known as the "Manchester Airport Eastern Link", but has been described as a "road to nowhere"1 and a "white elephant",2 as in its current state it does not extend to the airport. Plans to complete the road, extending it on both ends, are currently in the planning permission stage.
The A555 was built in the early 1990s, completed in November 1995, originally part of a then-abandoned scheme to connect various destinations in South Manchester (in particular Stockport, Hazel Grove and Poynton) to Manchester Airport. It was also intended as a relief road, to ease congestion in the villages. The original plan, which dated from the 1970s, was to build a bypass connecting Bredbury and Hazel Grove, and from Hazel Grove to Woodford, bypassing Poynton. The road would then run from Woodford to Handforth, as it does now, and then on to the airport. However, only the middle section, which crosses the A34 Handforth bypass (built at the same time) was completed, due to money shortage.
In November 2008, money was pledged by transport secretary Geoff Hoon to extend the route to Hazel Grove, and complete the link to the airport.3 However, following the change in government at the 2010 general election, the plans were placed on hold once more.4 However, in November 2011, the government finally approved plans to complete the link, as part of a major programme of infrastructure investment.5 The A6 to Manchester Airport Relief Road which completes the route between Hazel Grove and the Airport using the A555 is currently (2014) out for planning permission.
The route currently runs from the border of Woodford and Bramhall at a junction with the A5102, heading westward for approximately 2 miles before it reaches the A34 Handforth bypass, which is accessed by a grade separated junction. Close to this is Handforth Dean, a retail outlet consisting of Tesco Extra, Marks & Spencer and BHS. The route ends at a double headed roundabout with the B5358, on the border of Handforth and Heald Green, approximately three miles from the airport.
- "A555 extension: full maps". Mycouncillor.org.uk. 21 May 2009. Retrieved 13 April 2010.dead link
- "Manchester Outer Ring Road (south)". Pathetic Motorways. Archived from the original on 12 April 2010. Retrieved 13 April 2010.
- "Airport road link gets go-ahead". BBC News. 2008-11-25. Retrieved 2011-03-19.
- "Traffic plans scrapped by government". Stockport Express. 2010-10-27. Retrieved 2011-03-19.