City folks' doubts over £6.2m regeneration plans for major road

Traffic on Dereham Road in Norwich

Traffic on Dereham Road in Norwich - Credit: Sophie Wyllie

Major changes to one of the city's main thoroughfares has been met with mixed reaction by folks who will see the work happening on their doorstep. 

People living in Dereham Road doorstep have responded to the Transport for Norwich joint committee's £6.2m plans which would make major changes to five sections of the busy road to improve safety and cut two minutes off bus journey times.

Mike Rugen, 33, a biochemist, said: "I'm supportive of more cycling infrastructure."

And Frank Johnstone, 54, a trainer for Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service, said it was a "lot of money to spend" on buses. 

Frank Johnstone, who lives on Dereham Road in Norwich

Frank Johnstone, who lives on Dereham Road in Norwich - Credit: Sophie Wyllie

Mr Rugen added: "Traffic at rush hour is always at a stand still from Bowthorpe Roundabout to the city. I don't think the changes are going to improve much. We need to finish the Norwich Western Link."

Phil Write, who lives on the road, added: "It is an exuberant amount of money to save two minutes on a bus journey."

And a couple, who have lived on the road for 35 years, said: "It is important to get people around without putting more cars on the road. You are going to need the hubs."

But they added the council should look at making it easier for people to access their drives as it was impossible to get in and out.

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Sharon Blundell, Costessey county councillor who lives on Queen's Hills, said: "I'm concerned about the congestion at the Cherry Tree pub because it is going to be one lane for cars and one for buses."

Sharon Blundell with her husband Gary Blundell, who live on Queen's Hills estate in Costessey

District and county councillor Sharon Blundell with her husband Gary Blundell, vice-chairman of Costessey Town Council, who live in Queen's Hills estate in Costessey - Credit: Sophie Wyllie

She added the changes would prevent hold ups for traffic which in turn would increase pollution.

Mrs Blundell said it was still cheaper and easier to use a car rather than get a bus but understood there were issues with bus services because of a lack of bus drivers.  

Martin Wilby, Norfolk County Council cabinet member for highways, infrastructure and transport. Pict

Martin Wilby, chair of the Transport for Norwich joint committee and cabinet member for highways, infrastructure and transport - Credit: Simon Parkin

Martin Wilby, chair of the Transport for Norwich joint committee and cabinet member for highways, infrastructure and transport, said: “We’re putting forward five schemes along Dereham Road for consultation as a package because they’re designed to work together to deliver significant sustainable transport improvements along this major route."

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