Bus lane branded 'waste of money' is given go-ahead

Cromer Road in Norwich

Cromer Road. - Credit: Archant

A new bus lane, branded a "waste of money" by people living close to where it would run, has been given the go-ahead - despite the objections.

Two new sections of bus lane are to be installed in Cromer Road and Aylsham Road, in Hellesdon, at a cost of up to £2m.

Members of the Transforming Cities joint committee, made up of county, city and district councillors, agreed to the scheme at a meeting on Thursday, June 10.

It will see a bus lane installed between Fifers Lane and Mayfield Avenue on Cromer Road and one in Aylsham Road, between Suckling Avenue and Woodcock Road.

During consultation, 78.77pc chose ‘dislike it’ or ‘strongly dislike it' to the Cromer Road plans and 71.77pc choose ‘dislike it’ or ‘strongly dislike it’ for Aylsham Road.

Shelagh Gurney. Pic: Norfolk County Council.

Norfolk county and Broadland district councillor Shelagh Gurney - Credit: Archant

And at the committee meeting, Shelagh Gurney, who represents Hellesdon on Norfolk County Council and Hellesdon North West on Broadland District Council, spoke against the proposals.

She said: "It's not supported by the parish council, district councillors or by residents. There is much concern over this.

"Residents are saying it is not really necessary. There's cynicism that it's going to be necessary because you already have the funding for it."

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She said elderly people were frustrated that they would not even have the benefit of using the service, as the buses do not stop on Cromer Road.

She asked, if it were to go ahead, if it could be trialled between 7.30am until 9.30am, rather than being in place 24 hours a day, but the committee did not purse that further after advice from officers.

And Jeremy Cooper, managing director of Go-East Anglia which runs Konectbus and Park and Ride Services, told the committee the bus lane would help cut journey times.

Seven members of the committee voted in favour of the scheme, with Conservative South Norfolk district councillor Kay Mason Billig abstaining.

Work is now due to begin in October.

People living in the area had spoken of their opposition to the scheme.

Taylor Coburn, 18, of Lodore Avenue, said the plans were "ridiculous".

Taylor Coburn of Lodore Avenue

Taylor Coburn of Lodore Avenue - Credit: George Thompson

He said: "There’s just no need, it will cause more harm than good, I think, it will 100pc clog up the road, making it more congested and harder for everyone."