What's that smell!? Why this Ipswich junction is causing a stink
PUBLISHED: 17:59 16 April 2019 | UPDATED: 17:59 16 April 2019
Drainage crews have been called out nine times in the space of 14 months to pump stagnant water out of a busy Ipswich junction, it has emerged - costing the taxpayer thousands of pounds.
The former pedestrian tunnels beneath the Civic Drive and Princes Street junction in Ipswich were filled in back in 2015 as part of Suffolk County Council's revamp of the junction during the controversial Travel Ipswich scheme.
But one portion of the ramp leading down has not been filled, leading to rainwater gathering and stagnating.
Data published under Freedom of Information laws has revealed that Suffolk Highways crews have been called to pump out the putrid liquid nine times since January 2018 – costing around £7,500 in total.
Ipswich Borough Council leader David Ellesmere, said: “We were told that Travel Ipswich had been completed in 2015 but here we are nearly four years later and it's clear there is one aspect still not finished.
“The hoarding [around the entrance walkway] is an eyesore and it's costing £850 a time to pump this water, so the county council needs to bring this to a finish.”
During the Travel Ipswich works, which was a county council scheme to improve pedestrian, cyclist and bus passenger safety around town without holding up other motorists, the roundabout was stripped out at the Civic Drive junction and replaced with traffic lights.
The most recent water pumping took place last month, with occasions in January, February, April, May, July, September and November last year prior to that.
But a county council spokeswoman said it was working with landowners to come up with a solution, as even though it is a public highway the council did not own the land.
“We were unable to fill the ramp at the end of the Civic Drive/Princes Street junction project in 2015, due to on-going discussions with landowners,” the spokeswoman said.
“Further work in the area, including internal waterproofing, was completed in 2016-17 but not to fill the ramp.
“We are continuing to work with landowners to provide a long-term solution, this would involve filling the ramp with concrete and top-soil.
“We have set aside budget for this work and hope that it can be completed this year.”