Work to complete Quay Place entrance to be completed next month

The "temporary" road closure outside Quay Place. Picture: PAUL GEATER

The "temporary" road closure outside Quay Place. Picture: PAUL GEATER - Credit: Archant

A year after Quay Place centre opened in the former St Mary at Quay church near the Ipswich waterfront, staff should finally stop hearing the question: “Are you open yet?”

A temporary barrier set up when the bottom section of Foundation Street was “temporarily” closed to allow the work to start four years ago is finally to be removed next month.

The road closure was eventually made permanent after it was realised that the Star Lane gyratory system was safer without the cut-through.

But only the temporary barrier was left in place – leaving Quay Place looking as if it was still a building site.

Now Suffolk County Council is to replace it with permanent bollards at the end of next month after talking to trustees at Quay Place and to managers at the nearby Jerwood Dance Centre.

Quay Place manager Ginny Idehen said: “Thank Heavens for that! It looks as if we still aren’t finished with all those temporary barriers out there. We still get people coming in saying ‘Are you open yet?’

“Once that is done it will improve the look of the area and will be so much better – it should make it easier for people to find the entrance to the centre as well.”

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The work should be started on October 23 – a week after the centre itself celebrates its first anniversary.

Jane Storey, deputy leader of Suffolk County Council, said: “Now that building work has finished around Quay Place on Ipswich waterfront, we want to put a permanent solution in place along Foundation Street to close access to traffic and replace the temporary road bollards that are there at present. They have become a bit of an eyesore in recent months.

“We plan to do these works in October to fit permanent bollards at the junction of Star Lane to close access to vehicles.

“However, we have also agreed with Dance East that they may use this access on an ad-hoc basis for particular performances where they require larger vehicles carrying equipment to access their studios on the waterfront.

“We are pleased that we have been able to find a solution that works for everyone.”

Ms Idehen said they had heard recently that the county was planning to complete the work in October – but had not yet had it confirmed officially until this announcement.