Concerns have been raised that months of ongoing roadworks on a major Gwynedd route could lead to a “rat run” along a nearby single track road, sparking calls for urgent improvements.

The Welsh Government has started essential embankment strengthening works on the A494 at Llanycil –  the main road between the Meirionnydd towns of Bala and Dolgellau –  set to last until February 2021.

While a road closure notice has been published, civil servants say that while the trunk road will be reduced to a single lane during the works with traffic lights in place, they stress that no plans are in place to shut the road completely unless absolutely necessary.

Despite this, a local councillor has urged Gwynedd Council to look at improvements to B4403 road through Llangywer –  on the opposite bank of Llyn Tegid –  which he says has can  become flooded by vehicles in the event of any incident affecting traffic flow on the A494.

Speaking to the Local Democracy Reporting Service, Cllr Alan Jones Evans said: “I’m well aware of concerns that the A494 would be forced to close completely following publication of the road closure notice, although I’ve been reassured that this is only a contingency measure and won’t happen unless there are major issues during the pile driving,  such as the rock giving way.

“Complete closure would be a disaster, and I sincerely hope that it doesn’t come to that as its the major transport route in this part of Gwynedd.

“I’ve had many concerns from locals who depend on transport routes to the hospital in Dolgellau and the school bus routes, as any impact on the A494 leads to more cars using the Llangywer road which is very narrow and only has a small number of passing places, so its entirely unsuitable for a large volume of vehicles.

“It’s simply impossible for two lorries trying to pass each other and my fear is that in the event of any closure of the A494, say that the rock itself gave way for instance, it would lead to a massive amount of vehicles on a road that simply can’t handle them.”

Urging Gwynedd Council to look at a long term solution and improvements to the road, the member for Llanuwchllyn added: “I’ve been pushing for improvements for some time, not multi multi million pound works but simply to create more passing places at least, in order to ease the pinch points and to ensure that the hedges are maintained at least.

“There are floods on the A494 relatively often, or accidents, and in this area we already know what that means when cars are forced onto the Llangywer road, its chaotic.”

A Welsh Government spokesperson said: “Essential embankment strengthening works are currently taking place on the A494 at Llanycil.

“A single lane closure is in operation to ensure the safety of the public and workers and will remain in place for the duration of the works.

“No full road closures are planned.”

Gwynedd Council added: “We are aware that work is being undertaken on the trunk road A494 on behalf of the Welsh Government.

“Whilst we understand that this work will involve traffic lights and as a result some local traffic may use the smaller lanes between Llanuwchllyn and Bala.

“Accordingly we have taken action and our highways staff will be carrying out an inspection of these routes in case there are sections of the verge that may require to be cut back.”