A12: salvation in sight for 'England's worst road'

Gazette: A12 - more money? A12 - more money?

MAJOR improvements to the A12 costing £120 million have been recommended to get the go-ahead by regional chiefs.

A package of cutting edge technology and work to cut the number of accidents and improve the flow of traffic along the road once dubbed Britain’s worst looks set to get the thumbs-up from the East of England Regional Assembly (Eera) at the end of January.

In November, Transport Secretary Geoff Hoon offered a £60 million technology package, including variable message signs and automatic detection sensors, for the road, but only if the money was matched by the region.

Eera’s regional transport forum was originally recommended to only offer £50 million of an estimated £800 million package for transport improvements on the trunk road, with authorities in Essex and Suffolk asked to stump up the remainder.

However, lobbying from both county councils convinced the forum to recommend to grant all £60 million in plans which were agreed by the assembly’s regional planning panel later that day.

If approved by a meeting of the full assembly on January 30, the Highways Agency will spend the next few months drawing up the improvements.

Essex County Council leader Lord Hanningfield said: “This package will help address some of the appalling incidents and delays we see far too regularly on the A12.

“We have recently set up the A12 Alliance, which will help to tackle some of the interim problems through a joined-up approach from a variety of authorities and agencies and will bring about tangible benefits to motorists this year.

“Meanwhile, I welcome the fact that the Government have at last recognised the problems of ‘Britain’s worst road’ so that we can get on with delivering the better quality of life our residents deserve.”

If successful the work will still fall short of one key recommendation of last year’s independent inquiry into the A12, which was to bring the stretch in Essex up to “modern dual lane” standard.

Work is due to start in 2011/12.

Comments (5)

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5:15pm Tue 20 Jan 09

Sdapeze says...

This is all waffle. I have heard it all before. Come back and tell us when it has been agreed and a start date has been set. The road is so bad because of the number of cars on it. Irresponsible house building on the A12 corridor with no attention to infrastructure is at the root of it. I use a motorcycle when I go to London and it never ceases to amaze me to see how people willingly sit in the traffic jams that they cause and moan about. What a complete waste of time and energy.
This is all waffle. I have heard it all before. Come back and tell us when it has been agreed and a start date has been set. The road is so bad because of the number of cars on it. Irresponsible house building on the A12 corridor with no attention to infrastructure is at the root of it. I use a motorcycle when I go to London and it never ceases to amaze me to see how people willingly sit in the traffic jams that they cause and moan about. What a complete waste of time and energy. Sdapeze

7:11pm Tue 20 Jan 09

Boris says...

Well said Sdapeze, absolutely right.
Well said Sdapeze, absolutely right. Boris

7:34pm Tue 20 Jan 09

Omelette says...

What's the point in spending all that money repairing roads when pretty soon they'll be no cars on them?
What's the point in spending all that money repairing roads when pretty soon they'll be no cars on them? Omelette

8:10pm Tue 20 Jan 09

Andy Hamilton says...

They could start by removing the lane restriction on the A12 sliproad coming up from Spring Lane Roundabout.

No one was consulted about this and it is a safety hazard. Before it was done, two lanes of traffic gradually merged onto the A12. I drive a slower van but am forced to pullout into the faster traffic and hold the motorists up for several hundred yards.

If the incompetent County Council Traffic dept actually talked to the drivers the A12 could be made safer at low cost.
They could start by removing the lane restriction on the A12 sliproad coming up from Spring Lane Roundabout. No one was consulted about this and it is a safety hazard. Before it was done, two lanes of traffic gradually merged onto the A12. I drive a slower van but am forced to pullout into the faster traffic and hold the motorists up for several hundred yards. If the incompetent County Council Traffic dept actually talked to the drivers the A12 could be made safer at low cost. Andy Hamilton

4:17pm Wed 21 Jan 09

Heinz says...

The "East of England Regional Assembly" is an unelected quango. Who the hell gave them permission to spend OUR money?
The "East of England Regional Assembly" is an unelected quango. Who the hell gave them permission to spend OUR money? Heinz
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