Transport consultations and studies

Transport consultations and local transport development studies in Suffolk and how to comments on current transport plans in Suffolk.

Download a Strategic Outline Business Case for a relief road to the west of Sudbury (PDF, 1MB)

The Strategic Outline Business Case for a relief road to the west of Sudbury was published on 20 March 2017 following a review of previous proposals.

This work, part funded by the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership, has shown that a relief road to the west of Sudbury would cost approximately £40 million with a benefit to cost ratio of greater than 3, which means that for every £1 invested in the new road there would more than £3 of transport benefits.

In addition to transport benefits there would also be wider economic benefits arising from development that could be unlocked by the new road. These benefits would be quantified should the proposal receive funding for further development.

The aim of the proposed relief road is address the following problems:

  • congestion in Sudbury Town Centre causing issues for local residents and businesses.
  • congestion through Sudbury causing delay on the Primary Route Network.
  • congestion on the neighbouring Strategic Road Network M11, A12, and A120, for which some traffic could be better served by an improved route through Sudbury.
  • further potential growth in the area which is restricted by poor connectivity.

A number of bypass alignment options, to the west and south of Sudbury, have been assessed. Following public consultation in 2002 the southern alignment was rejected and the decision to focus on a western route was made.

The proposed western relief road scheme will enable traffic to travel between the A131 and the A134 without having to travel through Sudbury town centre.

All options for a new route will have environmental impacts and these impacts must be weighed against the positive impacts to the environment within Sudbury that is adversely affected by the existing and worsening traffic conditions.

Additional work on the environmental impacts would be undertaken as part of a more detailed business case.

The next step will be to seek funding from the Department for Transport and New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership to develop a more detailed business case to support a bid substantive funding from Government to deliver the new road.

Ipswich Northern Routes Study

A progress report carried out into the need for additional road capacity to the north of Ipswich, has been published.


The study is being funded in partnership with the Suffolk district and borough councils. This work forms part of the Suffolk County Council’s commitment to short, medium and long term plans to improve transport in the wider Ipswich area to address existing congestion and to accommodate future planned growth in and around the town.

A package of proposals to improve the A14 junctions around Ipswich is also being developed by the county council working alongside Highways England.

The first stage of the northern routes study has considered the transport conditions across the wider Ipswich area both now and in 2031, based on current planned growth and identified highway improvements, including the Upper Orwell Crossings.

In addition to these improvements there is likely to be a need for significant additional road capacity in the area to support future growth.

Highway options for consideration in the next stage of the study include:

  • single and dual carriageway roads, potentially with a strategic function to relieve the A14;
  • full relief road primarily to serve local traffic demand; partial relief roads to connect areas of potential development to the main road network;
  • and local distributor roads to spread traffic across the network.

Initial broad route corridors have been considered for a potential link between the A12 and A14; and are:

  • an inner corridor from Martlesham to Claydon
  • an middle corridor from Woodbridge to Claydon
  • and an outer corridor from Melton to Needham Market.

Preliminary traffic modelling has indicated that roads in each of these corridors would have different effects on traffic e.g. an outer corridor would have more benefit to longer distance trips than trips more local to the Ipswich area.

Each potential corridor would also have different impacts on the environment, and on the potential to support future growth.

The next stage of study will examine route options in more detail, including traffic, economic and environmental impacts. It will also consider the extent to which the options might support potential future scenarios for housing and employment growth beyond 2031.

This scheme is managed by St Edmundsbury Borough council on our behalf. We recently reviewed this scheme after a year of operation.

On 26 June 2015 questionnaires were delivered to all properties within the zone, asking for a response by 17 July. Of 250 questionnaires distributed, 77 were returned (31%).

Download the outcome of the consultation.

Download the Haverhill Town Centre Transport Report - a summary the priority messages and recommendations resulting from consultation events held in September 2013.

The report will be used in the St Edmundsbury Borough Council master-planning process and will inform any future changes to the town centre. 

The Transport Asset Management Plan (TAMP) sets out the Council’s approach to the maintenance of Suffolk’s highway network.