Five year ban on roadworks after drivers face 18 days of misery in King’s Lynn
Roadworks will be banned for up to five years on two busy roads into the centre of King's Lynn - to make up for major resurfacing works which will see drivers face 18 days of cogestion and delays.
Work begins on London Road and some of its side streets on Easter Sunday. Norfolk County Council says the surface of the busy routes is literally wearing out.
Restrictions will include the main London Road being open only to traffic leaving town, while it and nearby St James Road are re-surfaced between Sunday, April 8 and Wednesday, April 18.
Graham Plant, Norfolk's cabinet member for planning and transportation, said: 'Once complete, King's Lynn will have a high quality surface on a key route into the town. The old surface is wearing out, and if it is not replaced there will be an increasing risk of potholes and other problems.
'We can avoid that happening - and all the disruption of urgent roadworks - by this major resurfacing scheme, which represents an investment of �625,000 in King's Lynn's roads.
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'Unfortunately, on a route of this importance serious disruption is inevitable. The good news is that the County Council is using its legal powers to prevent any further planned roadworks on the newly surfaced road for the next five years.
'Barring emergencies, this will protect the new surface and ensure that motorists are not faced with such disruption for at least five years.'
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A county council spokesman later added the moratorium on roadworks was 'quite unusual'.
'It's not something we do as a matter of course,' he said. 'It's not a power that we use regularly, it reflects the difficulties of working on that particular piece of road.'
From Sunday, thousands of vehicles which use London Road each day will instead use Vancouver Avenue, Tennyson Road, Gaywood Road, Littleport Street and Blackfriars Road. The extra traffic is likely to cause major congestion around the town centre.
Ward councillor Lesley Bambridge said: 'It will inconvenience for the short term but it has to be done, there are parts of London Road that are diabolical.'
The temporary one way restriction will be removed late on Saturday, April 14, to allow surfacing works to be carried out the following day on the eastern side of the junction of Blackfriars Street, St James Road, Blackfriars Road and Railway Road junction.
On Monday, April 16, overnight work will commence to resurface St James Road between County Court Road and the Blackfriars Street, St James Road, Blackfriars Road and Railway Road junction. This is expected to last until Wednesday, April 24.
While this stage of the work is under way, there will be a one way restriction between County Court Road and Blackfriars Street, allowing traffic to travel outbound only.
Inbound traffic wishing to gain access north of County Court Road will be diverted via Vancouver Avenue, Tennyson Road/Ave, Gaywood Road and Littleport Street.
The final section to be resurfaced is the western half of the Blackfriars junction on Sunday, April 22. Traffic will again be diverted via Southgates Roundabout.
Blackfriars Street will be closed at the St James Road, Blackfriars Road and Railway Road junction.
During and after the main works, minor traffic control will be required for follow-up work such as cutting in traffic detection loops. This should be finished on the evening of April 28.