Ipswich drivers warned of 18 months of disruption as Anglian Water embarks on infrastructure upgrades
PUBLISHED: 12:27 16 February 2017 | UPDATED: 21:14 16 February 2017
Utility giant Anglian Water is about to start a series of multi-million pound investment projects in and around Ipswich – but drivers are likely to face some disruption while the work takes place.
As we revealed last week the company will be replacing a sewer between Gippeswyck Park and Commercial Road later this year in a bid to prevent of the disruption caused to the area in October 2015 when a sewer collapsed forcing an emergency closure of the road.
However the major work the company is doing involves installing a new 16km water main in the Stoke Park/Belstead Road area of the town in a £3.4m 18-month project.
This starts next month and will force the company to dig up a number of roads in that part of the town. It hopes to keep road closures to a minimum – and says much of the work should be done without digging up roads.
The work will start with roadworks on Belstead Road, Stoke Park Drive, Fountains Road, and Luther Road. These roadworks will be carried out with temporary traffic lights.
Mark Pryke, Anglian Water’s Network Manager for Suffolk, said: “The existing pipework is reaching the end of its life and needs to be replaced.
“Inevitably, with a project work of this scale there may be some disruption to residents and road users, and we apologise for this.
“In some places we may need to dig trenches, but we can also use slip-lining and boring techniques that go underground like a mole, meaning the road surface doesn’t need to be disrupted, a bit like performing keyhole surgery to the road surface.
Mr Pryke added: “Work will move around the Belstead area over the next year. Some lane and road closures may be needed for safety reasons but this will not be done without plenty of notice and access will be maintained for residents and emergency vehicles.”
The work is being co-ordinated with Suffolk County Council which has notified other utilities allowing them to carry out work in the same holes if needed.
County council leader Colin Noble said: “While utility companies have a statutory right to maintain their own networks, we co-ordinate works to minimise disruption and seek collaborative working opportunities where possible to ensure highways users are affected as little as possible.”