Work delayed by a ‘few weeks’ on A14 by Highways Agency

Work due to start tomorrow (Tuesday, February ) on the A14 between Bury St Edmunds and Stowmarket to reconstruct the carriageway has been delayed.

It was set to begin this week with gangs from Highways England setting out a contraflow system ahead of the major project between junction 47a at Haughley to junction 49 at Tothill, on the outskirts of Stowmarket.

However, the multi million pound scheme has been postponed until later in the month going into March.

The agency covering the main roads across the country issued details on its website this afternoon saying: “We were planning to do some early preparation work, which was scheduled to begin on Tuesday 7 February 2023. Due to technical challenges, we now need to move the dates of our work.

“We are working hard to ensure that the work starts within the next few weeks. We will put upcoming closure dates here (their website https://nationalhighways.co.uk/our-roads/east/a14-junction-47a-haughley-to-49-tothill-reconstruction-scheme) once they are confirmed.”

The work on the concrete stretch of the carriageway on both the eastbound and westbound sides includes a total reconstruction of the road, installing a new safety barrier, clearing drains, repainting road markings, and inserting new reflective road studs (cat’s eyes).

It was all set to go ahead tomorrow with the resurfacing work set to being in March with a long detour (see above) put in place during the creation of the contraflow. It will take traffic along the A143 to Stuston and the A140 towards Coddenham where the road rejoins the A14 and vice versa.

Although the Highways Agency are taking all precautions to limit the disruption to the local communities they acknowledge that there will be major potential problems for residents with vehicles choosing not to follow the recommended route and use the small village roads as “Rat Runs”. “It is inevitable that chaos looms” residents in Elmswell have said.

With the current closure of School Road, in the village, there have already been large lorries on the smaller roads such as New Road, Warren Lane, Wetherden Road and Church Road causing hold ups and one local resident commented: “We were warned months ago that it is going to be a nightmare and there does appear to be a perfect storm on its way”

National Highways have apologised in advance for any inconvenience caused by the work and indicate that once completed the life of the road surface should be extended by 50 years with fewer road closures in the future.

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