Great Yarmouth needs a third river crossing say bosses
- Credit: Norfolk County Council
We want a third river crossing for Great Yarmouth.
That is the high profile call that has been put out by council, business and public sector chiefs ahead of a crunch decision on whether the town gets funding for a £120m bridge.
Norfolk County Council expects to hear by September whether the government will provide funding for the crossing, which would help reduce congestion and bring major economic benefits to the town and the surrounding area.
Ahead of the decision the county council has produced a document called Great Yarmouth Third River Crossing - Building Futures which is being sent to what the authority called movers and shakers as part of its bid to secure the funding.
If the funding is announced then it is hoped the construction of the bridge could start by 2020.
The document has a message from council leader Cliff Jordan, who says the new crossing is vital to ensuring Yarmouth's and the county's economic growth and it would be unthinkable to stifle future opportunities due to the current congested road network in and around Yarmouth.
Mr Jordan said: 'We are determined to take full advantage of the opportunity that Great Yarmouth represents, for the good of its residents, the rest of Norfolk and the whole country.
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'Vital to this is ensuring the town has the transport infrastructure to support economic growth.
'We have the ambition, the evidence and the expertise to deliver this project, and we have invested £4m in the scheme to date.
'We now need the financial backing from central government to make this happen as soon as possible.'
Construction could last two years, meaning it may be finished in five year's time.
The plans for a third river crossing would see a lifting bridge constructed linking the A47 at the Harfreys roundabout in the Southtown area of Yarmouth to the port and the Enterprise Zones on the other side of the river.
In March a meeting of Norfolk County Council's Environment, Development and Transport Committee bound the council to underwrite part of the cost of a third crossing over the River Yare.
At the end of same month the council sent its funding bid to the government, with a decision being delayed due to the snap general election called by Theresa May.