£3.1m roadworks on new bus lane and crossings could last for ONE YEAR
- Credit: Sophie Wyllie
A major year-long £3.1m roadworks project to build new bus lanes and pedestrian crossings on a busy route is due to start next month.
The work is being done on Drayton High Road, Hellesdon, and paid for by Persimmon Homes Anglia and could take a year to complete, according to a spokeswoman for the housing giant.
She said: "Most work will be conducted under two-way traffic lights with some night closures to complete road resurfacing."
It is part of a planning condition for the 1,000-home White Rose Park development, being built on land formerly owned by Royal Norwich Golf Club in the newly-named Birchwood Road off Drayton High Road, granted by Broadland District Council in December 2016.
Designs have been carried out by Norfolk County Council on behalf of Persimmon and will include a bus lane from Hellesdon Park Road to Middletons Lane and converting a footpath to a cycleway/footpath 118 metres from the Asda supermarket junction.
Safe crossings for pedestrians and cyclists will also be put in at the Middletons Lane and Hospital Lane.
Despite the scheme being part of planning conditions there are fears from folks in the area about the impact of the bus lane.
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David King, who represents Hellesdon North West on Broadland District Council and is chairman of Hellesdon Parish Council, said: "It is another example of something that is needed to keep traffic flowing but is not in the right place. The necessity of a bus lane on Drayton High Road hasn't been proven. We have got to hope the end result will be of tangible benefit."
Geoffrey Woods, 55, from Drayton High Road, said: "It is going to be chaos when they start the roadworks. I don't think there is a need for a bus lane."
Brett Norton, 45, who also lives in the street, said the plans would involve widening the road with extra lanes and worried that would encourage drivers to use it as a race track.
He said: "It is already really busy. If it makes the traffic a bit better it is a bonus."
Luke Adams, 37, another Drayton High Road homeowner, said: "The bus lane isn't the perfect solution however it is better than what is there at present."