A14 work will see 40mph speed limits

MOTORISTS are facing weeks of delays through the summer on a notorious stretch of the A14 as Highways Agency bosses introduce a 40mph speed limit and lane closures.

John Howard

MOTORISTS are facing weeks of delays through the summer on a notorious stretch of the A14 as Highways Agency bosses introduce a 40mph speed limit and lane closures.

A £35million scheme to improve safety in the Haughley Bends area is reaching a critical stage as work to tie in the new road to the current carriageway begins.

The project involves constructing a new 2.3-mile dual carriageway between Haughley New Street and Stowmarket, with the scheme expected to be completed by the end of the year.


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But, in order to undertake the next phase, project managers will have to introduce a 40mph limit on both carriageways from the middle of July until mid-September.

And during six weekends - from July 18 to September 2 - there will be a contraflow system in operation from the Friday night to the early hours of the Monday mornings along four miles of the A14.

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One entire carriageway will be closed and traffic moved on to the other during weekends, although the Highways Agency will not do this during the Bank Holiday weekend.

The details were only finalised yesterday and Mike Povey, project manager with the Highways Agency, said: “I do sympathise with motorists about the delays that will be caused but it is inevitable.

“By limiting it to the weekends when traffic is lighter those delays will be kept to a minimum and we do not expect there to be long hold ups. We have done all we can to minimize disruption.

“The whole drive of this work is safety, there is such a poor safety record of this stretch of the A14 and it is a £35million scheme.

“Unfortunately there will be inconvenience for people, but we will complete it as soon we can.”

Villagers living near the work have complained that recent smaller road closures to accommodate the work have also left them facing delays, and claim the diversions are confusing, leading to HGV drivers ending up in villages.

But Alan Jones, spokesman for civil engineers Birse, said: “Once the scheme is complete people will appreciate the vastly improved safety there, there will be a huge improvement.

“We are only talking about inconvenience for the coming few weeks while we are undertaking essential work.

“We have been working on site for about 12 months and it is only during the last couple of weeks there has been some minor inconvenience. This is a small price to pay for increased safety.”

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