Relief in sight for Gapton Hall junction
Laura Bagshaw LONG-awaited work on Great Yarmouth's notorious Gapton Hall roundabout will start in the autumn, the Mercury can reveal. The project follows years of campaigning from business and political leaders for improvements at the bottleneck junction on the A12.
LONG-awaited work on Great Yarmouth's notorious Gapton Hall roundabout will start in the autumn, the Mercury can reveal.
The project follows years of campaigning from business and political leaders for improvements at the bottleneck junction on the A12.
In an email seen by the Mercury, Roger Chenery, project sponsor for the Highways Agency, states while no fixed date has been confirmed for the work, it will begin in the autumn and span over the Christmas period.
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However, work will take place overnight and be suspended over the holiday period to cause less disruption.
The �600,000 package of improvements includes the introduction of hi-tech Mova traffic lights, timed to respond to where traffic flow is heaviest.
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Existing traffic lights will be removed from the Gapton Hall Road junction and lane changes will be made to the northbound and southbound A12. Road markings and signs will also be improved.
The Gapton Hall Task Force, a pressure group made up of political and business leaders from the town, was set up in 2007 to steer improvements at the roundabout.
Yarmouth Borough Council cabinet member Graham Plant chairs the task force and welcomed the news, saying improvements would benefit businesses, local residents and visitors to the town. He said: “We have been working for three years to try and get improvements at the junction which is a bottleneck for Bradwell and the A12. This is a �600,000 package of work which they [Highways Agency] anticipate will increase capacity by 20pc, which is to be welcomed.”
Town Centre manager Jonathan Newman said: “I hope they actually do the job. It has been felt for some time that people have been put off coming into Yarmouth because of the queues at Gapton Hall.”
A Highways Agency spokesman said: “The Highways Agency has worked hard to design a scheme for reducing congestion and improving safety on the Gapton Hall roundabout. As part of this work, we carried out detailed traffic modelling to determine the best solution to benefit drivers using this busy stretch of road. We have worked closely with local stakeholders, including the borough, county councils, the police and the port authority.
“A new system of traffic management is to be installed later in the autumn, with new 'intelligent' traffic lights in place to control the flow of vehicles around the roundabout.
“An announcement about the details of the scheme will be made prior to the work commencing.”