£2.8m plan could mean 460 extra spaces for park and ride site

Thickthorn Park & Ride. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Thickthorn Park and Ride site could be expanded if £2.8m plans get the go-ahead. - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2015

Hundreds of extra spaces could be added to one of Norwich's Park and Ride sites, if a £2.8m expansion plan gets the go-ahead.

If the scheme gets the go-ahead, then it would see 460 extra spaces added to the 726 currently available at the Thickthorn Park and Ride site.

And bosses at Norfolk County Council say it would also mean there could be a dedicated Park and Ride service between Thickthorn and Norwich Research Park.

The project would be paid for using a share of the £32m which the government awarded Greater Norwich from its multi-million pound Transforming Cities pot.

The proposed 460 spaces would be made up of 389 standard parking bays, 30 bays for disabled drivers, 10 parent and child bays, 29 standard electric vehicle bays and two disabled vehicle electric bays.

There would also be eight new coach parking bays, extra motorcycle parking, bicycle storage, Amazon lockers, new cycle and pedestrian links and new digital real-time information signs.

Consultation over the plans took place in May and June, which garnered 29 responses.

Ten supported the proposals, eight opposed them and 11 were neutral or gave no opinion.

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Members of the Transport for Norwich joint committee, made up of councillors from Norfolk County Council, Norwich City Council, South Norfolk Council and Broadland District Council, will meet on Thursday (November 18) to decide whether to submit the plans for the expansion to South Norfolk Council.

If the committee agrees, the application would be lodged before Christmas.

If it is approved, the goal would be to begin work on the expansion by next autumn.

Martin Wilby, cabinet member for highways and infrastructure at Norfolk County Council

Martin Wilby, Norfolk County Council cabinet member for highways and transport. - Credit: Simon Parkin

Martin Wilby, chair of the Transport for Norwich joint committee and cabinet member for highways, infrastructure and transport, said: “A lot of work has already gone into proposals for the Thickthorn Park and Ride expansion, so I’m hoping the committee will agree to take this important project forward to the next stage.

"The introduction of more capacity to this site would give us the chance to reduce congestion on this major corridor, particularly as our city continues to grow in the years to come.”

The current lease for the existing site would need to be extended to include the land needed for the extra spaces, with negotiations with the landowner under way.

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