New pictures of park and ride scheme

THIS is what Ipswich's controversial third park and ride site should look like when it opens by next Christmas. Bulldozers will move on to the site in April to prepare the site at the junction of the A12 dual carriageway roundabout with the A1214 from Kesgrave.

THIS is what Ipswich's controversial third park and ride site should look like when it opens by next Christmas.

Bulldozers will move on to the site in April to prepare the site at the junction of the A12 dual carriageway roundabout with the A1214 from Kesgrave.

As reported in later editions of last night's Evening Star, Liberal Democrat and Labour councillors joined forces to support the scheme at a meeting of Suffolk County Council's development control sub-committee.

They defeated by 10 votes to nine the Conservatives and independent councillor Richard Kemp, who questioned the cost effectiveness of park-and-ride in general, and the site's location, even though it is included in the Suffolk Coastal local plan.

County transport planner John Palk told councillors that the proposals could not be regarded as a panacea for all of Ipswich's transport problems but was one of a number of complementary measures being implemented to improve living conditions and reduce congestion in the town, and to provide an alternative to the use of the private car.

He said most people using the two existing sites at Norwich Road and Copdock were long stay parkers. Ipswich's policy was to price out of the town centre long stay motorists, but encourage those who wished to stay for short periods.

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Despite objections from local residents and parish councillors, he insisted the Martlesham site was the correct one. It was at the junction of a radial route from Ipswich and a main road and bus lanes would mean that it would be easier to beat congestion by using park-and-ride rather than driving into the town centre.

Martlesham is one of four remaining key public transport projects which the county council believes will encourage people not to drive into Ipswich – the others being major improvements to the East Suffolk rail line from Lowestoft and park-and-ride projects along the Wherstead Road corridor and Nacton Road/Felixstowe Road.

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