|Manchester Outer Ring Road|
Looking south at Cutler Hill near Failsworth
|Part of and|
|Maintained by Highways England|
|Length||36 mi (58 km)|
7 miles (11 km) are concurrent with the M62 motorway
|History||Opened: 1960 (as M62), 1971 (Middleton Link), 1974 (as M63)|
|Orbital around Manchester|
J4 -> M56 motorway
J24 -> M67 motorway
|Manchester, Stockport, Trafford Park, Ashton-under-Lyne, Oldham|
The M60 motorway, Manchester Ring Motorway, or Manchester Outer Ring Road, is an orbital motorway in North West England. Built over a 40-year period, it passes through all Greater Manchester's metropolitan boroughs except for Wigan and Bolton. Most of Manchester is encompassed within the motorway, except for the southernmost part of the city (Wythenshawe and Manchester Airport) which is served by the M56.
The M60 is 36.1 miles (58.1 km) long and was renamed the M60 in 2000, with parts of the M62 and M66 and all of the M63 being amalgamated into the new route. The road forms part of the unsigned Euroroutes E20 and E22.
In 2008, the M60 was proposed as a cordon for congestion charging in Greater Manchester, although this was rejected in a referendum relating to the Greater Manchester Transport Innovation Fund. The M60 is the only true orbital motorway in the United Kingdom; the M25 motorway in London is not, due to the Dartford Crossing being designated the A282.
The M60 was developed by connecting and consolidating the existing motorway sections of the M63, M62, and an extended M66. It came into existence as the M60 in 2000, with the completion of the eastern side (Junctions 19-24) opening in October.
The original plan called for a completely new motorway, but policy change led to the plan which created the current motorway. As soon as it opened, the motorway got close to its projected maximum volume on significant sections.
As an orbital motorway, it is equivalent to London's M25 motorway; unlike the M25, the M60 forms a complete loop. In 2004, a section of the northern M60 was the UK's busiest stretch of road, with an average of 181,000 vehicles per day using the stretch between junctions 16 and 17. Usually, the western side of the M25 motorway holds that distinction, but the M25's figures at the time were lower than normal due to roadworks starting.
In 2006 the section between junctions 5 and 6 was widened from three to four lanes each way and the section between junctions 6 and 8 was widened from two to three lanes each way with an additional two-lane collector/distributor road on either side of the main carriageways. Access for junctions 6 to 8 is only from the collector/distributor road. Some of the junctions were extensively re-modelled. As part of the project, the A6144(M) motorway, which connected to the M60 at junction 8, was downgraded and lost its motorway status.
The Greater Manchester congestion charge which would have affected drivers only during peak times coming off the M60 towards Manchester was rejected by a referendum on 12 December 2008.
Work to upgrade two sections of the M60 to a managed motorway system had been planned to commence in 2013. This would have included a new lane from junction 12 to 15 and a new lane from junction 8 to 12 near the Trafford Centre. Both these projects were subsequently cancelled in favour of a new project that includes speed cameras on this section but no additional lane or hard-shoulder running. An 'environmental assessment' was cited as the reason an additional lane will not be provided. Consequently, daily congestion on this section is expected to continue indefinitely. A combined approach was initiated in 2014, comprising managed motorway system and lane gain scheme. Work commenced in July 2014 and is expected to be completed by summer 2018.
|M60 motorway genealogy|
|J1 - J7||M63|
|J7 - J12||Opened as M62,|
later became M63
|J12 - J18||M62|
|J18 - J19||M66|
|J19 - J23||Planned as M66,|
opened as M60
|J23 - J25||M66|
|J25 - J1||M63|
Each motorway in England requires that a Statutory Instrument be published, detailing the route of the road, before it can be built. The dates given on these Statutory Instruments relate to when the document was published, and not when the road was built. Provided below is an incomplete list of the Statutory Instruments relating to the route of the M60.
The junctions on the M60 are very closely spaced together, with an average distance of 1.3 miles (2.1 km) between junctions. The recommended junction spacing for motorways is every 10 to 20 miles (16 to 32 km). By comparison, the M6 motorway has an average distance of 5.3 miles (8.5 km) between junctions.
|M60 motorway junctions|
|mile||km||Anti-clockwise exits (B Carriageway)||Junction||Clockwise exits (A Carriageway)|
|0.0||0.0||Stockport (West & Centre) A5145||J1||Stockport (West) A5145|
|1.5||2.4||Cheadle A560||J2||No access (on-slip only)|
|Cheadle, Wilmslow A34||J3||Cheadle, Wilmslow A34|
|No access (on-slip only)||J4||Chester, Warrington, Manchester , Birmingham (M6) M56|
|4.5||7.3||Chester, Manchester , Birmingham (M6) A5103 (M56)||J5||Manchester (C), Didsbury A5103|
|6.0||9.7||Sale A6144||J6||Sale A6144|
|6.8||10.9||Manchester (C), Stretford, Altrincham A56||J7||Altrincham, Manchester (C), Stretford A56|
|7.5||12.0||End of variable speed limit||J8||Carrington A6144|
|Carrington A6144||Start of variable speed limit|
|9.3||15.0||Trafford Park, Trafford Centre A5081||J9||Urmston B5158, Trafford Park A5081|
|10.3||16.5||Trafford Park, Urmston B5214||J10||Trafford Park B5214|
|11.4||18.4||Eccles, Irlam A57||J11||Irlam, Eccles A57|
|12.2||19.7||Manchester (C), Salford M602
(M6), Liverpool M62
|J12||Liverpool, Warrington M62|
Manchester (C), Salford M602
|13.0||21.0||Swinton A572, Worsley A575||J13||Worsley, Leigh A575, Swinton A572|
|14.1||22.7||St. Helens, Leigh A580||J14||No access (on-slip only)|
|(M6 North), Preston, Wigan, Bolton M61||J15||Preston, Wigan, Bolton M61|
|16.3||26.2||Salford, Kearsley A666||J16||No access (on-slip only)|
|18.5||29.7||Manchester City Centre, Prestwich, Whitefield A56||J17||Whitefield, Prestwich A56|
|19.8||31.8||Start of variable speed limit||J18
|Burnley, Bury M66|
Leeds, Huddersfield M62
Bury, Burnley, Blackburn M66
|End of variable speed limit|
|21.0||33.8||Middleton A576||J19||Manchester City Centre, Middleton A576|
|22.6||36.4||No access (on-slip only)||J20||Middleton, Blackley A664|
|24.7||39.8||Rochdale, (A627(M)), Chadderton (A663)||J21||Manchester City Centre, Chadderton (A663)|
|26.3||42.3||Manchester City Centre, Oldham A62||J22||Oldham A62|
|28.6||46.0||Ashton-under-Lyne A6140||J23||Ashton-under-Lyne A635|
|30.6||49.3||Manchester City Centre, Denton A57, Hyde, Sheffield (M67)||J24||Denton A57, Hyde, Sheffield (M67)|
Manchester City Centre A57
|Bredbury A560||J25||Bredbury A560|
|No access||J26||Stockport (E&C) A560|
|Stockport (East) A560||J27||No access (on-slip only)|
|36.1||58.1||Motorway continues to J1|
Hyde, M., O'Rourke, A. and Portland, P. Around the M60: Manchester's Orbital Motorway. Altrincham: AMCD Publishers, 2004.