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A12: Evidence of need for A12 bypass for Sizewell C

PUBLISHED: 09:00 18 February 2013 | UPDATED: 09:22 18 February 2013

 A wide load makes its way through the Farnham bend on the A12.

A wide load makes its way through the Farnham bend on the A12.

TRANSPORT chiefs have provided hard evidence of the desperate need for an A12 bypass should a third nuclear power station be built on the Suffolk coast.

The study, commissioned by the county council, makes it clear that a relief road around the four villages of Marlesford, Little Glemham, Stratford St Andrew and Farnham will be vital if EDF builds Sizewell C.

While acknowledging daily traffic flow has dropped in recent years – from 16,500 in 2006 to 15,529 in 2012 – it warns this could increase hugely.

Assuming a project start date of 2017, it predicts a rise to 20,210 vehicles a day by 2024 (thought to be the peak period of construction) – with around 1,800 of these forecast for Sizewell C.

The report states: “But in practice there would be high levels of development traffic before the peak construction period, sustained over a number of years.”

By 2024 the number of cars using the road is predicted to rise by 17.1%, LGVs by 39.7% and HGVs by 21.9%. Of the 1,795 assumed to be travelling to Sizewell C at the peak of construction, 400 are predicted to be cars, 200 buses, 430 LGVs and 765 HGVs.

The study also reveals concentrations of nitrogen dioxide along the four-village stretch of the A12 are already close to the permitted threshold – and would more than likely be exceeded unless a bypass is built.

Debbi Tayler, from the Four Villages Bypass Group, said: “I am pleased with it and particularly the conclusion – it confirms exactly what we know and what we have been saying all along.

“This report shows the impact of their traffic and that traffic will be significant – we definitely need a bypass.”

A spokeswoman for the energy firm said: “EDF Energy notes the A12 traffic impacts report that Suffolk County Council has commissioned and will look at the findings.”

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