Work starts on new car park at Norfolk hospital

Hopes of relieving parking congestion at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital have been boosted by the start of work on 350 new spaces.

Workmen and diggers moved on to former farmland near the hospital yesterday that will help increase parking capacity at Norfolk's main hospital. However, the site to the west of the hospital, only has temporary planning permission and is set to be redeveloped within the next ten years.

The land is owned by Bullen Developments, which is carrying out the work, and the new car park is expected to be ready to use by the early summer.

The work comes after patients called on the hospital trust to address parking at the Colney site where traffic queues at peak times to get one of its 850-spaces. Since 2003 there has been an almost 80pc increase in staff and a 77pc increase in inpatients and outpatients. Plans for the 350 spaces were granted by South Norfolk Councillors in September, despite concerns from Norwich City Council surrounding traffic management and the delivery of sustainable transport for the Norwich Research Park (NRP).

Anna Dugdale, chief executive of the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, said: 'We are delighted to be working with Bullen Developments to provide a car park with an additional 350 spaces for visitors to the hospital. This will address one of the biggest areas of feedback from our visitors who have faced recurring problems in finding parking spaces at the hospital.'

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The new car park is set for redevelopment in the future for hospital development and is earmarked for research and development use.

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