Bristol Temple Gate: 'Lessons learned' as works start
The mayor of Bristol insists planners have learned lessons to ensure roadworks at a major junction in the city will not cause traffic gridlock.
Work on removing the Temple Circus roundabout near Temple Meads station has started.
Marvin Rees said the work will bring "greater simplicity" to the road network.
Drivers going through the area said they expected traffic "chaos" as a result.
The works are part of the Temple Gate project which aims to improve travel connections with Bristol Temple Meads station, the nearby enterprise zone, a new campus for Bristol University and the Bristol Arena.
Travelwest says the current road layout "acts as a significant barrier for people moving between Temple Meads, the Enterprise Zone and the wider city".
The existing roundabout will be removed to be replaced with a "simplified junction", providing better bus, cycle and pedestrian links.
Lane closures for site investigations begin today, with the main works starting next month to autumn 2018.
The works come as existing major roadworks to build the £216m Metrobus public transport system are not expected to be completed until the end of 2017.
Meanwhile, major redevelopments nearby are planned over the next few years.
The new Temple Quarter Campus for Bristol University will house a "digital innovation hub" and is expected to open in 2021, while Bristol Arena could still open in 2020 despite fears it may be scaled down or scrapped.
Mr Rees insisted: "We are convinced our transport team have learned lessons from the works done in the city centre.
"We will bring greater simplicity and be less vulnerable to the lockdown we get when one part of the network goes wrong."
Bristol City Council said the work has been scheduled to avoid overlap with other major roadworks, and "as far as possible two lanes of traffic will be kept open on Temple Gate during peak hours to keep traffic moving".