Drivers braced for six weeks of disruption as Great Yarmouth roadworks ‘make good progress’
PUBLISHED: 17:55 08 October 2019 | UPDATED: 18:10 08 October 2019
People travelling around Great Yarmouth will have to grit their teeth for another six weeks as “good progress” is made on a scheme to fix a problem junction.
The work by Norfolk County Council has seen road closures and diversions at a key pinch point around the Matalan junction and Southtown Road and lead to delays, particularly around public transport.
Meanwhile businesses affected are experiencing a dip in custom, amid reports elderly people have been marooned in their homes as buses are re-routed.
A Norfolk County Council spokesperson said the work was on schedule.
"Work already completed includes the permanent removal of the old traffic lights at the Station Road/Southtown Road junction, and underground cabling and drainage work is underway in readiness for the replacement lights at the Pasteur Road/Bridge Road/Southtown Road junction, and the new pedestrian and cycle crossings," they said.
"We are working six days a week to ensure this project is completed as swiftly as possible.
"We are monitoring the traffic management arrangements and talking to local businesses to ensure disruption is minimised as far as possible.
"The HGV delivery agreements with the businesses between Station Road and Pasteur Road are working well, fully signed diversion routes are in place, and businesses open as usual signs continue to be clearly displayed."
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Eva Howkins of Fitness 2,000 said her members were still braving the works but she felt for businesses where potential customers could use other options.
"The fact that you can just shut off a whole area for that period of time without getting people to work longer does not seem to be the way to minimise disruption when you could have got it down to three or four weeks," she said.
She added she was also aware of old people stuck in their homes without a bus service while the works were going on.
Meanwhile changes to bus routes were taking their toll on journey times.
Chris Speed, head of operations at First Bus in Great Yarmouth, said: "The roadworks in the town are causing considerable disruption to our bus services and customers.
"Contingency plans have been introduced with temporary timetables being implemented and reduced frequencies being put into place on some services and we are still experiencing delays in Gorleston with the high street being closed due to roadworks.
"Although these emergency measures have had to be introduced, our driving team are doing a great job trying to keep services running."
The works began on September 23 and are scheduled to take eight weeks.