Campaigners criticise Ipswich wet dock crossing proposals

An impression of the possible development of the island site with the double bridge over the lock in

An impression of the possible development of the island site with the double bridge over the lock in the foreground. - Credit: Archant

A road crossing across Ipswich’s wet dock would lead to more traffic and pollution, transport campaigners have said.

Hopes of building the link across the river were supported by Chancellor George Osborne this month when he included £2 million in his budget to allow the detailed plans for the project to be drawn up.

Kevin Ablitt of Cycle Ipswich said: “Clearly something needs to be done about the congestion and pollution levels in the waterfront area.

“However, building another urban road does not work. Look at all the intra-urban dual carriageway systems built in the 60s and 70s, they did little to alleviate the pressure of motor traffic volumes and blighted countless townscapes.”

He said a wet dock crossing would do nothing other than generate more traffic at the approaching roads, Cliff Lane, Landseer Road, Station Street and Wherstead Road.

Sian Berry, of the Campaign for Better Transport said Ipswich would be better served by links for public transport, walking and cycling rather than road crossings, which would threaten to make gridlock on other roads more likely.

Chris Starkie, managing director of New Anglia LEP said: “This project is all about boosting economic development and easing traffic congestion in Ipswich.

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“Providing an alternative route to the much congested Star Lane area is essential if we are not to stifle growth because of a lack of good connections between the town centre and the waterfront.

“We want public transport, cyclists and pedestrians to benefit from much needed improvements too.”

Mr Starkie said the budget funding would go towards the design of the bridges as well as the design of the road connections and that top priority would be to assess the economic, ecological and transport implications of the project, and to consult widely on the findings.

He added: “Please be assured, all views will be taken into account before any firm decisions are taken.”