We all know the frustration of driving down an A-road and getting stuck in congested traffic. Well, I come bearing great news: Essex County Council is trying to improve driving conditions for the A120 between Braintree and the A12. They have proposed five alternatives for dual-carriageway links on the major east to west route. After getting feedback from haulage companies, they are now selecting which improvement plan to follow through on. Why Does the A120 Need Improving? Anyone who regularly drives down the A120 between Braintree and the A12 will know that it is an integral artery connecting Essex and the surrounding areas. Improvements need to be made because: • Maximum traffic capacity has been reached • Traffic queues are long and common • Congestion causes unwanted delays • Drivers are frustrated • Traffic volumes are expected to rise further • Collision numbers have increased Essentially, as it is such an important east to west road, the A120 is constantly congested. This causes long and delaying traffic cues which are frustrating for haulage companies whose drivers need to keep to a strict schedule. The council has also predicted that traffic volumes will increase over the coming years, as industry around Essex blossoms. With more vehicles on the road, there has been a rising number of accidents, which cause more delays. The road has become dangerously overcrowded, and desperately needs upgrading. The improvements suggested will greatly benefit all road users, including haulage companies. |
Suggested Improvements In January, the Essex County Council launches a feasibility study to establish which alternative route would solve congestion problems. They suggested five routes linking Braintree and the A12O (bear with me here). Options A, B and C all start just west of Galleys Corner. They then diverge, with route A bypassing Bradwell to the north, route B passing to the south of Glazenwood Park and route C going north of Tye Green and Cressing. Route B and C both run through Bradwell Quarry before re-linking with route A, crossing the River Blackwater and finally joining the A12 at a new junction between Kelvedon and Marks Tev. Options D and E both start on the Braintree southern bypass. While the D route passes south of Glazenwood Park, route E passes north of Tye Green and Cressing. They both then run through the south-west corner of Bradwell Quarry and join the A12 at Kelvedon south junction. Any of these routes would benefit haulage companies by improving journey time reliability and reducing traffic congestion. By dividing traffic between two roads, the A120 will be safer and the environmental impact of transport on communities along the corridor will be limited. What Happens Now? After 8 weeks of consultations and over 1,000 answers, the survey closed earlier this month. Responses and issues raised are now being analysed and reviewed. By autumn, the County Council will have determined the best way forward and will recommend their preferred option to the Secretary of State for Transport and Highways England. Their proposed strategy will then be considered for inclusion in the 2020 to 2025 Government Road Investment strategy.
Norman Dulwich is a Correspondent for Haulage Exchange, the leading online trade network for the road transport industry. Connecting professionals across the UK and Europe through their website, Haulage Exchange provides services for matching haulage companies with jobs in road transport and haulage work. Over 4,000 transport exchange businesses are networked together through their website, trading jobs and capacity in a safe 'wholesale' environment.
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