Bloor Homes considers 24 hour working at Woods Lane, Melton, to curb road closure disruption
PUBLISHED: 07:14 05 November 2017 | UPDATED: 23:50 05 November 2017
Housing developers have agreed to consider working around the clock to minimise disruption from a fiercely opposed road closure, which gets underway in east Suffolk on Monday.
Bloor Homes said it was “examining the possibilities” of working 24 hours a day at Woods Lane, Melton, following a heated public meeting at which it was accused of potentially “ruining lives and businesses”.
The closure, which is part of Bloor’s 180-home Longwood Fields development, had initially been scheduled to last 16 weeks either side of Christmas.
More than 3,000 people signed a petition calling for “compromise” over the closure, which is feared to have a major impact on people in Melton, Woodbridge, the Sutton Peninsula and beyond.
A drop-in session on Tuesday saw residents warn “thousands of lives” would be disrupted and businesses ruined.
Faced with mounting opposition, Bloor has agreed to consult on 24-hour working – but only for the second phase, which was initially from January 8 to April 13. Phase one will still run until November 30.
Bloor said: “Phase two will begin on January 8 and Bloor Homes is currently examining the possibilities of working on this phase 24 hours a day, thereby reducing the estimated time of the road closure.
“This is in response to feedback from the public drop-in session that was held on October 31.
“In advance of the second phase, Bloor Homes will be contacting all residents in the area immediately around Woods Lane for their feedback on the proposal to work 24 hours a day.”
Bloor has also responded to concerns over the diversion for lorries through Ufford, which involved a sharp turn between Wilford Bridge Road and the B1438. Instead, lorries will be advised to use Station Road, avoiding the sharp turn. Parking and waiting will be prohibited on Station Road to ease traffic flow. Other vehicles will be diverted through Woodbridge, as originally proposed.
The closure is to allow Woods Lane to be widened, sewerage systems laid and a new bus stop created to serve the housing development, which was approved on an appeal to the Planning Inspectorate. Suffolk Coastal District Council had refused the application and attempted to overturn its approval at an unsuccessful High Court hearing.