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Delay in A11 dualling process

PUBLISHED: 12:47 19 February 2009 | UPDATED: 22:32 05 July 2010

HOPES of an early dualling of the last single carriageway stretch between Norwich and London have suffered a setback after an A11 public consultation period was extended.

HOPES of an early dualling of the last single carriageway stretch between Norwich and London have suffered a setback after an A11 public consultation period was extended.

Today was meant to be the deadline for people to lodge their comments regarding the £127m road upgrade between Thetford and Barton Mills.

But the Highways Agency confirmed that it had extended the public consultation process for another four weeks in a bid to address some of the objections.

Draft orders for the nine mile project, which would bypass Elveden, were published in November after transport secretary Geoff Hoon gave his support to the scheme. But highways officials said that the public consultation will now end on Thursday, March 19.

Roger Hawkins, Highways Agency project manager, said: "We have decided to extend the consultation period for a further four weeks in order to address the objections that we have received so far. If this can be achieved successfully and a public inquiry avoided then construction of this long-awaited scheme could begin earlier in 2010 than currently programmed.

"The A11 is a heavily used trunk road of regional importance which, with the A14, provides major links between London, the Midlands, East Anglia. The Fiveways to Thetford section of the A11 is the last remaining single carriageway section of the route, and this scheme will bring increased capacity, more reliable journey times and improved safety to road users."

Work to dual the missing link of the A11 is scheduled to begin at the end of 2010, but could start five months earlier if a public inquiry were not required.

The draft orders and environmental statement are available to view at the Highways Agency offices in Bedford, council offices and local libraries. Anyone who would like to comment on the proposals can send them to A11 Fiveways to Thetford Improvement Scheme, Highways Agency, Woodlands, Manton Lane, Bedford, MK41 7LW.

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