Norfolk Council agrees on preferred route for £153m Norwich Western Link
July 18, 2019 – Norfolk County Council’s Cabinet has agreed on Norwich Western Link, a preferred route for a new link road that would improve travel between A47 and Broadland Northway west of Norwich.
The 6.2km Norwich Western Link is expected to reduce traffic congestion and delays to journeys on minor roads to the west of Norwich. Construction is expected to begin in 2022 and could be open for traffic by early 2025.
Estimated to cost £153m, the dual carriageway route would link from the roundabout at the western end of Broadland Northway (formerly the NDR), cross the River Wensum on a viaduct and join the A47 via an improved junction at Wood Lane, which forms part of Highways England’s plan to dual the A47 between North Tuddenham and Easton.
Together with the A47 dualling between North Tuddenham and Easton, due to get underway in early 2022, this would create a fully dual carriageway orbital route around Norwich.
Norfolk County Council Leader Councilor Andrew Proctor said: “We need good transport networks in Norfolk to enable our communities and businesses to thrive and to give people a better quality of life.
“A brand new high standard road between Broadland Northway and the A47 is badly needed to tackle the traffic problems in this area, which are likely to only increase with the long-term population and business growth set to take place in and around Norwich.
“The Norwich Western Link will also help to reduce emergency response times, including to the nearby Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, and improve access to Norwich Airport, Norwich Research Park and the new Food Enterprise Zone, all of which have ambitions to grow and create more jobs in the months and years ahead.”
The alignment and elements of the design for the preferred route for the Norwich Western Link are claimed to have lesser environmental impacts. At the same time, mitigation measures are also expected to be put in place to minimise any adverse impacts.
Norfolk Council said that the project will not have adverse impacts on the integrity of the River Wensum Special Area of Conservation, which could be achieved by designing a viaduct.
The council consulted Natural England and the Environment Agency who consider that if a new road is needed, a new viaduct would be an acceptable solution subject to design and construction methods.