Highways England criticised over A14 roadworks approach near Felixstowe
- Credit: Charlotte Bond
Highways England has been accused of not doing enough to prevent disruption during A14 roadworks near Felixstowe - in contrast to the efforts made in the Ipswich area.
People in the Trimleys, near Felixstowe, have raised concern after months of roadworks saw lorries and HGVs diverted off the main carriageway and through small villages overnight.
No contraflow system was put in place as Highways England said the road was not wide enough. However, those decisions are now being questioned after a contraflow was recently put in place near Ipswich — also on a dual carriageway.
One resident, who has asked not to be named, said he was 'stunned' to hear of the new contraflow in Ipswich. He said: "The Ipswich and Felixstowe areas have suffered from six months of disruption caused by roadworks on the A14.
"Tiny, historic, villages such as Walton and the Trimleys have seen giant container trucks rumbling through at night as the A14 is shut in one direction or the other.
“This has blighted life, sleep being impossible at night as convoys of noisy container lorries rumbled through.
“Contraflow here would allow our villages to rest at night — and allow Highways England to crack on both day and night.”
The company has said, however, it is not uncommon for carriageways to be different widths and that time and budget constraints play a part in the decision making.
A spokesperson added: "We appreciate that living near roadworks is not easy, and we work hard to keep disruption to a minimum.
"The scale of the work on the A14 between junctions 52 and 55 is substantial, and with recent national lockdown restrictions it has meant traffic figures have reduced considerably.
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"This combination of the scale, scheme budget and traffic reduction has allowed Highways England to implement a contraflow system to reduce the time taken to complete the scheme from nine-weeks to four.
"We try hard to be a good neighbour and we ask that people bear with us while we finish this important work."
The width of the A14 at Ipswich was checked during the design phase of the scheme and found to be sufficient to implement a contraflow system, the spokesperson said.