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Drivers frustrated by traffic problems trapping them in Suffolk Retail Park for more than an hour

15:26 27 February 2016

Suffolk Retail Park

Suffolk Retail Park

Archant

Drivers are being frustrated by mystery traffic problems which have left a retail park gridlocked.

A aerial view of Suffolk Retail Park, just off London Road in Ipswich. Photo: Owen HinesA aerial view of Suffolk Retail Park, just off London Road in Ipswich. Photo: Owen Hines

Drivers trying to leave the Suffolk Retail Park, just off London Road in Ipswich, have reported having such a hard time doing so they have moved just a few yards in more than an hour.

Those in the car park are also struggling to see what is happening to bring the traffic to a standstill.

Robert Richardson is trapped in the car park and between 1.15pm and 2.45pm moved just five car lengths from his parking spot towards the exit.

“This is appalling to be honest,” he said. “There’s people still trying to get in. One lady has been here since 1pm.

“Nobody’s giving way to anyone. It needs someone to take responsibility for the situation.”

Mr Richardson says he normally drives to Norwich when going out shopping with his wife but had been “pleasantly surprised” by Ipswich until the traffic problems struck.

“People feel intimidated,” he added. “I this is a common occurrence you’d have thought all the stores her would have kicked off about it.

“It’s just mad.”

Are you caught up in the traffic problems? How long have you been stuck there? Email newsroom@archant.co.uk

37 comments

  • I must be missing something here regarding the planning application that was granted permission (1400144FUL). All it does is create an additional lane for turning left into London Road, but at the moment London road from that point is "ACCESS ONLY" and there's no mention of that being changed. In fact I have never seen anyone turn left out of there so it seems pretty pointless. What might help is something to allow traffic turning right out of the park to do so without having to slowstop to give way to traffic from the left; synchronised traffic lights or a roundabout perhaps? However I wouldn't be surprised if that just moved the problem to the Yarmouth Road lights. Yup, it's a mess and I'll just continue to avoid it at anything other than very quiet times of the day.

    Report this comment

    tractorboy1964

    Monday, February 29, 2016

  • I have read loads of comments about this nightmare car park, I have been stuck in it numerous times, why don't the council look at an alternative exit either onto Yarmouth Road or SurreySirdar Road, this would make more sense and cuts out the use of the traffic lights at the main junction

    Report this comment

    Jambec59

    Sunday, February 28, 2016

  • "instruct PCSO's to issue some tickets for a few days..." Good luck with that one Waspie... there was a time when there were a few about and doing just that occasionally at the Little Bramford Lane junction with Chevalier Street where people ignore the one way no entry signs every day and nip through. Now, there's no hope of the law being upheld at that point and drivers know it....only about two of these officers left in Ipswich now? As a cyclist that uses the area every day, I have lost count of the times I have been confronted by drivers including a police car driving the wrong way down Little Bramford Lane. My attitude is to take up the middle of the road and force them all to slow down till the last second just to make me feel better! Swearing or a raised finger at them does no good, but at least does relieve some internal annoyance.

    Report this comment

    Sarky Sage

    Sunday, February 28, 2016

  • Sorry Waspie, I agree with you, but yellow boxes are a waste of good paint! There is one at the end of our road, and I wish I had a penny for everytime I see someone stopped in it, blocking the whole road. It seems if they don't make eye contact and keep looking ahead it is no problem! I have even seen police cars in them, and on the other side of the road oblivious to the problems it causes.

    Report this comment

    ElaineD17

    Sunday, February 28, 2016

  • One of the many causes of congestion in this area is the are the drivers who look no further than the end of their bonnets when negotiating the Yarmouth Road Handford Road traffic light junction. " oh the lights are green so I'll go across even if it blocks the opposing traffic if the lights turn red"....gridlock. Get some yellow boxes down with some sort of enforcement..instruct PCSO's to issue some tickets for a few days and people will learn. Get the lights in sync as well...too much to ask?

    Report this comment

    waspie

    Sunday, February 28, 2016

  • The nest area for this is going to be the station revamp which will have a tiny area for public cars compared to know. It's going to be a real mess at pick up time in the evening when loads of cars turn up at onece, especially when the train is delayed and cars have nowhere to wait and queue except on the road. We have people with half a brain in charge of traffic in the town.

    Report this comment

    McLean

    Sunday, February 28, 2016

  • Close the whole site down and sell it off for housing , move all the units to bury road where b & q currently is ... problem solved in two locations !!

    Report this comment

    deeber

    Sunday, February 28, 2016

  • I honestly thought fights would break out yesterday, no one would give way to any one , I see cars exiting from the entrance to try and cut there was out cars driving over the curbs so they didn't have to cue this was all caused but impatient and ingredients drivers who are in a hurry.

    Report this comment

    Da Monk

    Sunday, February 28, 2016

  • Whole area is a nightmare, especially when cars are queueing to get into the tiny Lidl carpark. Before this store was here, there was rarely a problem. Ban queueing on the Handford Road and free up the traffic flow. Too many traffic lights with no thought as to how retail park customers are supposed to join the traffic flow. As for what might happen in an emergency - it will take a fatality for the authorities to finally take action to improve the situation.

    Report this comment

    Sd

    Sunday, February 28, 2016

  • I am a taxi driver trying to make a living in this mess. Recently I had a job from the range to chantry for which I was paid £4.60, it took 50 minutes and no tip!. That equates to less than £4 per hour after costs. The answer? too many traffic lights of course.

    Report this comment

    spboy

    Sunday, February 28, 2016

  • The range and dunelm are good shops with great staff and a popular choice for a diverse choice of goods and prices...hence the present gridlock that we also experienced once but now always go outside of Saturday and bank holiday hours. Bury St Edmund gets congested during school hours and Saturdays too and the Sainsbury roundabout there is a nightmare to access with traffic blocking entrance and exits. However the Norwich road to Asda is as diabolical and congested as London Road, Ipswich and you would just transfer the problem.

    Report this comment

    sue douglas

    Sunday, February 28, 2016

  • i have been stuck here many times and now refuse to shop here at weekends it is much worse at christmas and other peak times. the layout ot the carpark does not help with cars jumping the queue, since lidl was built it has got much worse.only one solution close the whole thing down as the retailers don't give a toss. eventually no one will shop there anyway.

    Report this comment

    oracle

    Sunday, February 28, 2016

  • Comments here about a hotel refused permission because of traffic problems.... no change in the traffic situation but the hotel then allowed. So, reader's, what happened in between???

    Report this comment

    Johnthebap

    Sunday, February 28, 2016

  • Rat running isn't a solution but a symptom and it will just create more problems. Forcing cars to turn left isn't a solution either, whether it be up London Road or Handford Rd. All the cars that wanted to go right will have to turn around somewhere. The whole stretch from the Crane Hill, Ranelagh Rd, Hadleigh Rd lights to the next lights 60 yards on at West End Rd, Yarmouth Rd and then a further set about 30 yds on for Lidl and Suffolk Retail Park is idiotic but Ipswich's whole ethos seems to be one of discouraging motorists. Buses and cyclists get caught in this mess too and pedestrians have to breathe in the fumes of queuing cars. Perhaps we need a committee of the same old suits to look in to this issue and declare it a success.

    Report this comment

    McLean

    Sunday, February 28, 2016

  • Ipswich doing it's normal thing with traffic - hold it up for as long as possible and then blame all the drivers for the problems. Is it any wonder I refuse to shop in the place?

    Report this comment

    Dean

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • (As no one else has mentioned it) Quite an old aerial view!!! The pub, the takeaway, the flats off Yarmouth Road and supermarket expansion not on it. Like others have said, this isn't news. It has been like this for a long time. People are absolutely stupid to go there on a Saturday. Even more so that they don't all turn left do a rat run and avoid the wait. Most shops in the town centre close at 5.30pm, Suffolk Retail Park is a "retail park" where stores close at 8pm. Never a problem getting out after 6pm in the week. An hour to get out of shopping at stores such as The Range, Dunelm Mill, Brantano, a small Next store, Halfords and Argos. Says a lot about these people. So impatient and stupid - you come out of The Range an overpriced QD or Dunelm Mill an overpriced Wilko and there is a large queue of cars exiting at a non-moving pace... would it only be me to wait until the situation improves (i.e. window shopping or heading down the local pub) rather than fire up the engine and watch the fuel tank indicator decrease?! I bet all these numpties were so mad at the delay, the windows were down, breathing in each others car fumes!! Nice community spirit. Longer term, Suffolk Retail Park needs to be redeveloped into flats, the retailers can then relocate to an out-of-town retail park, this time on the outskirts of the town, not the outskirts of the town centre!

    Report this comment

    Ipswich Entrepreneur

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • Coming from Felixstowe you can't even get to Lidl! You get stuck queuing at the Sainsbury's roundabout, gave up shopping there years ago, would rather shop online and pay for delivery

    Report this comment

    preep

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • Nice point amsterdam 81 - "When the new pub was built they said there couldn't be a hotel as well because of the traffic, but it is now being built "..... I have seen nothing about the sudden building of this hostel on this website yet when the pub was built, there was plenty about all the reasons why the hostel wouldn't get planning permission. Is this another case of what the eye doesn't see......

    Report this comment

    Sarky Sage

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • I wrote to the property managers several weeks ago after being caught for ages in the car park, this was after Xmas, so no excuses there. Needless to say I have had no response. The stupidity is it gets so gridlocked that vehicles cannot get in for the congestion caused by vehicles getting out. Easier said than done but the whole area needs boycotting until a resolution is found. Annoying especially as Next are no longer in town and Martlesham a bit of a hike if west side of town.

    Report this comment

    ej

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • It's a terrible joke, just like that mess that's been made of civic drive that I had the nightmare of waiting at today. Whoever is responsible for these places should be dumped in the ocean.

    Report this comment

    Fill-a-stein

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • The access to Suffolk Retail Park is due to be upgraded any time now - permission was granted last April for "Construction of widened access road to serve Suffolk Retail Park including footway, verge and 'bellmouth' to London Road (revised proposal)." (1400144FUL). The plans reveal that another set of Traffic Lights are to be installed here, including Advanced Stop Lines for cyclists at the exit of the site, meaning queuing traffic will be held back further in the retail park so cyclists have priority at the junction! (seriously, how many cyclists do we actually see exiting Suffolk Retail Park?!).

    Report this comment

    DP

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • This isn't news, it's been like that for years! Large car parks, funnelled into a single lane which is held up by a complex set of traffic lights. Not sure why that's a mystery?

    Report this comment

    Jim Strobe

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • What happens if there is an emergency? Like to see the emergency services get in there.

    Report this comment

    JC

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • Why sit in a car park for an hour for the sake of half a dozen shops? quicker and uses less fuel to go to Norwich, better selection of shops, easy parking, and a half decent market all within 5 minutes of the car park. No wonder Ipswich is becoming a ghost town, the council tries its hardest to drive motorists away.

    Report this comment

    Terry Reynolds

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • Never go there anymore, and if I didn't work in Ipswich, I wouldn't ever go into the town centre. Two words sum up driving, or queuing to be more accurate in Ipswich.......,. TRAFFIC LIGHTS!!!!

    Report this comment

    england1770

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • Traffic is always busy around that area and so many traffic lights! These are big popular shops! They need to move to a better site. The retail park up near asda would be perfect as that is nearly empty now and easy to get to! It makes sense and would get the customers back that now avoid it!!

    Report this comment

    Katies Home Hair

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • Get SCC to install some lights,...............Oh, I forgot they agreed the site access when the retail park was built. How about in off London Rd as is and a new access for traffic to exit onto Yarmouth Rd controlled by lights. When the new pub was built they said there couldn't be a hotel as well because of the traffic, but it is now being built so SCC don't care about traffic chaos. Says it all.

    Report this comment

    amsterdam81

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • The traffic lights let only a limited number of cars through, but for each junction within the car park, the number of cars that would be let through is divided. This would be equally if there was fairness, but in reality, people tend to push through, or not depending on how assertive they are. There's also a 3 way join within the car park in front of dunelm mill. If you end up with an unassertive person somewhere in front of you, especially on that junction, then I can understand why people just don't go anywhere. Best thing to do is turn left and rejoin Handford road on Handford cut, or better still Park at Sansbury's and walk!

    Report this comment

    JDermot

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • I won't go there. If you have to then park at Lidl then dash across the road.

    Report this comment

    John Alborough

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • Dreadful place. An exit on to Yarmouth Road may also have been an option but there do always seem to be horrendous traffic problems wherever you have a Next store (Martlesham) Perhaps they could pay for any road layout changes?

    Report this comment

    malcwiththetalc

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • Same old issues, simple solution I suggested years ago, no right turn from the site, everyone has to go left. Flow would be much better. Cheap, no extra roads, bridges etc... People would then have to join the Handford Road at Portman Road lights. Alternative, lights moved back along London road to the other side of the exit, allowing cars from car park to leave under control of lights.

    Report this comment

    bonser

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • In the past it was suggested for exit on to yarmouth road but believe it was turned down due to traffic effect onto that road and possible dangerous position

    Report this comment

    Richard Tann

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • This has been happening for the past decade not happened over night it worse a Xmas. How I see it u got two many exit points with in car park if everyone was made to go same route queues to leave would be quicker layout of car park is wrong. Does not help with traffic lights but if I were forced to go left out of Suffolk retail park that would help as area gets grid locked due to the amount of cars entering and leaving the retail park. This an old problem.

    Report this comment

    Richard Tann

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • We too avoid this place like the plague. We took about 35 - 40 mins to get out of here about 18 months ago, never been back and never will. Take our trade elsewhere now, you can drive further out of town to shop and use less fuel than shop here.

    Report this comment

    richie w

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • A poorly planned site with one road in and one road out.. That is why I have previously suggested an express highway built along the river starting from this car park and a slip road from Yarmouth Road. Build a road over the river all the way to Stoke Bridge with slip roads on and off it. Straight in to the wet dock and out to Wherstead Road and over the "proposed wet dock bridge" to Duke St or Landseer Road.

    Report this comment

    chantry

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • I no longer go there purely because of getting out of the car park. Sad when you lose customers because of this.

    Report this comment

    ran 528

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

  • It is purely caused by the Traffic lights as you leave. If there was no right turn as you leave the junction would not be blocked. Quite a simple problem to resolve. It has been going on for at least 6 years or more. I visited there every week and never parked in there at busy times. The situation is only there at busy times. I have reported it to IBC and SCC who will not do anything a out it as the gridlock is not on a public highway , pathetic i say . Also the owners of the site are fully aware of the problem but again continue to do nothing about it . Just ask any of the store managers down there about it .

    Report this comment

    Poppys Dad

    Saturday, February 27, 2016

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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