Northern Bypass supporters launch petition for new Ipswich road
The Ipswich-based group backing a Northern Bypass – or route – across the town has launched an online petition to give people the chance to show their support for the project.
Orwell Ahead, which campaigns for a better deal for the Greater Ipswich area, has launched the petition on the change.org website to try to show the strength of feeling in favour or the road.
The launch comes after the Stop the Ipswich Northern Bypass campaign was launched with the support of parish councillors from 16 towns and villages to the north of Ipswich.
Mark Ling, from Orwell Ahead, said his group favoured the construction of the inner route for the new road because it would remove the most carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, would be used by the most vehicles and would do most to reduce congestion in Ipswich.
He said: "We know there are strong feelings on both sides of this debate. We understand the concerns of the people who live in the path of the proposed new road.
"But there are also many, many people in the Ipswich area who are desperate for a new road to relieve the congestion they have to face - and provide a new link around the town.
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"This petition will give them the chance to have their say on the issue."
The petition has been launched in the middle of a consultation period being run by Suffolk's councils on the three routes for a possible road.
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There are a series of exhibitions showing the options at village halls and community centres between now and the end of July - but people have until September 13 to have their say on the proposal.
The leaders of all Suffolk's councils backed the consultation, which will help to decide which route is chosen for the new road.
But there will have to be many further discussions before a full bid to build the road is submitted to the government - and battle lines are now being drawn up.
The campaign against the road is being supported by Central Suffolk and North Ipswich MP Dr Dan Poulter. Whichever route is chosen will pass mainly through his constituency and he has warned that the government would demand the construction of thousands of new homes in the area if there was any chance of the road being built.