Around 900 people have shared their views on plans to widen the A12 in Essex as part of a public consultation which closed recently.
Anyone with an interest in the work was invited to take part in the consultation, and before it closed on Friday 3 March, 679 had responded online, 65 had sent e-mails registering their feedback, and around 150 had posted responses.
Highways England held seven consultation events over the course of the consultation, with staff available to speak to over 1,853 members of the public who attended.
The events showcased Highways England’s plans to widen the A12 between junction 19 (Boreham interchange) and junction 25 (Marks Tey interchange), which will reduce congestion, improve safety and boost the economy. It is part of the Government’s record £15 billion investment in England’s motorways and major A roads.
Highways England programme leader Richard Hofton said:
I want to thank everyone who took part in this consultation. We heard some really interesting views and suggestions during the events and I was encouraged by the amount of people that took time out of their days to come and see us and then also contribute formally to the consultation. Local feedback is vital to achieving a successful scheme. We will now me analysing all the responses we received and share the results of this, announcing what our preferred route is this summer.
Some 89 per cent of respondents were positive about the events, which were held alongside Essex County Council’s consultation into its nine options for a new A120 route between Braintree and Colchester, which would bypass the existing villages the road travels through, as part of its feasibility study. The figure rose to 94 per cent satisfaction at Boreham, with residents and other interested parties sharing their views and learning more about both schemes at the events.
The four options shortlisted in the consultation were:
- Option 1 – widening the existing A12 corridor (the online option)
- Option 2 – widening the existing A12 corridor between junctions 19 to 22 and 23 to 24 and two new bypasses between junctions 22 and 23 (Rivenhall) and between junctions 24 and 25 (Marks Tey)
- Option 3 – a variation of option 2 with only one new bypass between junctions 22 and 23 (Rivenhall)
- Option 4 – a variation of option 2 with only one new bypass between junctions 24 and 25 (Marks Tey)
Following the consultation, the feedback will now be used to help Highways England and the Government reach a decision on which of the four options to pursue to widen the A12.
Following this analysis, a preferred route announcement will be made in summer 2017, detailing which of the options the Highways England will deliver as part of the Roads Investment Strategy.
Members of the public should contact the Highways England customer contact centre on 0300 123 5000.
Journalists should contact the Highways England press office on 0844 693 1448 and use the menu to speak to the most appropriate press officer.