November opening for controversial £19m junction on A47 at Postwick

Postwich hub, picture Mike Page

Postwich hub, picture Mike Page - Credit: Archant

Traffic could be making use of a controversial new road junction on the edge of Norwich by November, council bosses have said.

Construction work on the £19m Postwick junction, at the eastern end of the A47 Southern bypass, started in May last year.

Drivers have faced months of disruption, with road closures and diversions.

Earlier this summer, the road was shut while beams for the new bridge over the A47 were hoisted into place.

But officers at Norfolk County Council say progress has been good and anticipate traffic being able to use the junction in three months' time.

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A council spokeswoman said: 'The new Postwick junction is expected to be open to traffic in November. However, it won't be open in its entirety until the beginning of December as final works to the existing bridge need to take place.'

The council says the junction will release land for 1,600 homes and unlock some £80m of private investment, potentially paving the way for 5,000 jobs. But protestors criticised it as an over-engineered gateway to the controversial Norwich Northern Distributor Road.

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There were legal challenges to planning consent and a public inquiry, before work could start.

Meanwhile, drivers are facing more disruption. Last night saw the start of overnight closures on the A47. They are full closures both east and west to ensure safety and traffic is having to use the slip roads.

And the A1042 Yarmouth Road will need to shut next month, so surfacing of the junction, white lining and installation of loops for the new traffic signals can be carried out.

Weekend closures will take place from 8pm on Saturday, September 19 until 6am on Monday, September 21 and between the same times on Saturday, September 26 until Monday, September 28.

There will also be a series of weekday overnight closures, from 8pm to 6am from Monday, September 21 until Friday, September 25 and between the same times from Monday, September 28 until Friday, October 2.

The council says the closures have been planned for the weekend and overnight in an attempt to minimise disruption to the travelling public and to the Postwick Park and Ride site.

• What do you think of the changes? Write, giving full contact details, to Letters Editor, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich NR1 1RE,

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