THE construction of an airfield took less time to complete than nightmare roadworks in Colchester, it has been claimed.

Residents continue to raise concerns about the ongoing improvement scheme in Ipswich Road and Harwich Road.

A petition with thousands of signatures has been sent to Essex County Council, urging for the roadworks to be sped up.

The works, which will see the replacement of the double roundabouts with a single roundabout at each location, are expected to last until winter next year.

Resident Peter Williams said, following a visit to Thorpe Abbots airfield, he learnt it was built within a year, having started in early 1942.

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Engineers built 11 miles of concrete roads, three and a half miles of sewers, five miles of water main, 14 and a half miles of storm drains, and 300 individual buildings. He said: “It could have taken them up to 18 months but when you think about how much they did, it’s pretty substantial.

“The Ipswich Road works do not need that much time, it’s ridiculous.

“We may have some cabling to move, but how far along the road do they have to go?”

One resident called the works “barbaric”.

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He said: “It takes me less time to commute from my office in Bury St Edmunds to Colchester than it does to get around Colchester, it’s ridiculous. The council must do more to ease this issue.”

BT is carrying out telecoms works in St Andrews Avenue and Eurovia, the contractors for the works, is undertaking works to the wall between the Ipswich Road roundabout and the Waitrose car park.

These works need to be carried out before Eurovia can begin building the new roundabouts.