A12 traffic lights scheme will 'only add to congestion', survey says

Crossings are among the projects often funded by Suffolk county councillor locality highways budgets

An online poll has suggested Suffolk residents are not convinced plans to introduce traffic lights on the A12 would be effective (file photo) - Credit: Gregg Brown

Suffolk residents have said proposals to introduce traffic lights on the A12 to the east of Ipswich would "only add to congestion".

Suffolk County Council has outlined a £60million scheme to upgrade the road in a bid to improve traffic flow and ease congestion in the next four years.

But an online poll has strongly suggested that the majority of residents do not approve of the plans - with many suggesting the cash would be better spent elsewhere.

Maps of A12

Junctions on the A12 which will be subject to the upgrades under Suffolk County Council's plans - Credit: Suffolk County Council

A public consultation on the scheme, which would see a series of traffic lights installed on most roundabouts between the A14 junction at Seven Hills and the Woods Lane junction, was launched earlier this week.

If approved, work could begin autumn 2023 and be completed in 2025.

It is expected to cost between £40m and £60m, with 15% in local contributions being needed.

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Andrew Reid, county council cabinet member for highways, said the junctions are likely to be affected by "significant congestion" in the future.

Andrew Reid,

Andrew Reid, Suffolk county councillor for highways, said the junctions could suffer from congestion in the future - Credit: Simon Lee

However, an online poll of 625 people found that 86% of respondents do not believe installing a series of traffic lights would be effective at reducing congestion.

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Several people in the survey also voiced their concerns towards the proposals on social media - with many claiming that congestion is not currently an issue on the A12.

Others argued that traffic lights were previously removed in Kesgrave as they were found to be ineffective.

Aaron Tooke said: "How is the forced stopping of traffic at traffic lights supposed to encourage traffic flow? I travel from Woodbridge to Ransomes industrial estate in the morning rush hour and never have to queue for very long at all.

"Is there a way to use temporary traffic lights on one or all of the roundabout as a trial to see if it works, and if it's worth spending the money?"

Sonia Jacomb added: "Traffic lights were put on the roundabout in Kesgrave and then removed as they proved to slow the traffic. Please stop wasting our money."

And Mark Mitchell said: "Traffic lights on roundabouts only add to congestion and not ease it."

However, there were some who could see the benefits of the scheme during rush hour.

Mark Aldous said: "Fine if they are part time. Only need to manage flow in peak times."

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