Reader Letter: The authorities have made an enormous blunder with the NDR

A near miss between a car and lorry on the NDR roundabout. PHOTO: Archant

A near miss between a car and lorry on the NDR roundabout. PHOTO: Archant - Credit: Archant

One reader thinks big mistakes have been made with the NDR. What do you think?

Following several letters concerning the Northern Distributor Road and its layout I would like to add my observations.

Norfolk/Norwich people or regular visitors to the area who have been using the Norwich Southern Bypass over the past 25 years might logically assume that the layout and make up of the new extension to this road would be the same, with slip roads on and off, at all of the junction points.

Roundabouts will definitely come as a surprise to many who will have expected to be able to travel its length, if passing from one end to the other, without interruption.

After travelling at normal dual carriageway speeds the need to slow down to safely negotiate the roundabouts on the new bypass, now all with three traffic lanes, will again come as a surprise to many drivers.


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The roundabouts themselves with their three lanes of traffic are perfectly safe if all the users are content and prepared to negotiate them at a maximum speed of between 25 and 30mph. This might allow the drivers to stay within the lane markings, as obviously intended by the engineers who designed it.

Unless you have the skills and concentration of Lewis Hamilton and a car with sports car like suspension it is not possible to remain in your allocated lane, in safety, at any speed above 25 to 30mph at most of the roundabouts, particularly in the near side lanes.

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This contradiction of expectations is not really sensible and the planners/designers should have realised this long before construction or following completion and testing.

Keeping within your correct lane at all of these junctions at all times is essential if this new road is to remain safe and accident free.

Without major layout changes the most obvious remedy at the roundabouts would be a 30mph restriction within 500 metres at and around the roundabouts, on all surrounding roads, unfortunately policed by speed/safety cameras, without which very few people will take any notice.

This much needed solution would demonstrate and confirm that the authorities had made yet again an enormous blunder which no one would be happy to accept responsibility for.

We just have to wait and see what their next crazy idea will be.

This new road in its current, free for all format, in my opinion is a bad design and will have lots of serious consequences for very many unfortunate motorists and their families.

Do you agree with our reader? Let us know in the comments below or write to us at edpletters@archant.co.uk

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