New bus lane at Colchester’s North Station will not replace a car lane

Essex county councillor Rodney Bass.

Essex county councillor Rodney Bass. - Credit: Archant

New bus priority measures planned on a busy Colchester road will not remove a lane of traffic.

Essex County Council (ECC) has long intended to introduce measures around North Station ahead of a park and ride being introduced in the town.

Park and ride is set to open at the end of March next year.

There were fears that a lane of traffic would be removed under the railway bridge to provide a bus lane, with concerns it could have a major impact on other traffic.

However County Hall has now confirmed it is not removing any existing general traffic lanes, and would be providing bus priority measures including a bus lane southbound.

Work installing the measures northbound is due to begin this month and finish in mid-December, with southbound works scheduled in the New Year to avoid affecting Christmas traffic.

Rodney Bass, county councillor for highways and transportation, said: “These are important schemes for the town and will deliver benefits in terms of economic and residential growth, provide improvements to congestion and air quality, and will help deliver long term aspirations for Colchester town centre.

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“I appreciate these works may cause short term disruption in order to create long term benefits, and ask that motorists plan their journeys accordingly and consider alternative methods of transport where appropriate.”

However Dominic Graham, Colchester borough councillor for the area and North Station Road resident, said: “I’m not convinced there’s room though we have not seen the details yet. Pedestrians and cyclists are being pushed to one side and turned in for the car driver.”

Anne Turrell, borough councillor for regeneration, added: “It is welcome news – there has been a lot of scaremongering about this.

“If the large majority of existing through traffic uses park and ride, as they do in other towns, it will make life a lot better for Mile End residents.”