Transport consultations and studies

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

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.

Suffolk County Council have commissioned our consultants WSP to undertake options appraisal for a long list of transport options for Sudbury that will be assessed against the scheme objectives and using the Department for Transport’s Early Assessment and Sifting Tool.

The primary scheme objectives include:

  • improving conditions within the town and the surrounding area
  • reducing congestion
  • addressing concerns relating to freight traffic (HGVs in particular)
  • enabling growth within Sudbury and the surrounding area
  • improving connectivity

On 13 July 2018, Suffolk County Council and WSP presented to local stakeholders on the work undertaken to date and the work we are planning on undertaking, and the presentations have been provided in the following links:

You can also read the Traffic Data Collection Report (PDF, 951KB).

You can download the Options Assessment Report:

On 7 December 2018, a presentation was given to local stakeholders at Sudbury Town Hall: Final Sudbury Presentation (PDF, 624KB).

Suffolk Energy Gateway (SEGway) comprises an improvement to the 4.5 mile section between the B1078 at Wickham Market and the A1094 in East Suffolk, bypassing the communities of Little Glemham, Marlesford, Stratford St Andrew and Farnham.

In line with our published timetable, we have now submitted an Outline Business Case to the Department for Transport (DfT). The aim of the submission is to obtain Government funding to develop the scheme and take it through planning.

Outline Business Case

Part 1:

Part 2:

Role of Suffolk County Council

Following submission of a Strategic Outline Business Case to the Department for Transport, Suffolk County Council received funding to develop an Outline Business Case for the two full four village bypass options (the single and the dual).

The submission is competitive against a number of other schemes submitted by other highway authorities from across the country.

Consultation findings

Our recent consultation helped to give us an up to date view of the impact the existing road is having on local residents, businesses, parish councils and other key stakeholders. 

The consultation also helped to give us an indication of which type of road, if any, respondents would be most supportive of.

The alignment of the two options was indicative only and further detailed consultation on the actual alignment would need to be carried out, if the scheme were to progress.

Below are some of the headline findings from the consultation: 

  • 299 responses were received
  • 43% of respondents felt the current A12 has a negative impact on the local area
  • The top three specific areas of negative impact highlighted by respondents were; Congestion (119), Ability to cater for growth in traffic (110) and safety (107)
  • 87 respondents supported Route Option 2 (dual carriageway) but would accept Route Option 1 (single carriageway)
  • 49 respondents would only support Route Option 2 (dual carriageway)
  • There was strong agreement amongst respondents that Route Option 2 would support all of the scheme objectives, with most agreement that the scheme would reduce congestion, as well as improve quality of life for residents.
  • 2 respondents supported Route Option 1 (single carriageway) but would accept Route Option 2 (dual carriageway)
  • 5 respondents said they would only support Route Option 1 (single carriageway)
  • 52 respondents didn’t support either route option, with the main concern being the environmental impact of a new road through existing countryside
  • 92 respondents did not indicate if they supported Route Option 1 (single carriageway), Route Option 2 (dual carriageway) or neither option. 


We would expect to hear in late spring 2018 whether our bid for additional funding has been successful to take forward.

The scheme would be subject to preliminary design and further consultation in 2018 with a view to submit a planning application for determination in early 2019. It is envisaged that the scheme would be built between April 2021 and April 2023 opening to the public in April 2023.

SEGway represents the first phase of improvements to the A12 corridor between Ipswich and Lowestoft considered necessary by Suffolk County Council, Suffolk Coastal District Council and Waveney District Council.

Costs and Benefits

The dual carriageway alignment has been costed as approximately £133 million while the single carriageway alignment has been costed as approximately £88 million.

The proposed dual carriageway has been assessed as having a Benefit Cost Ratio of 1.906, meaning that for every £1 spent on the scheme would return £1.91, while the single carriageway has a Benefit Cost Ratio of 1.898.

Additional benefits include improved safety along the route, improved air quality for houses along the existing route and a reduction in noise. The scheme would support economic growth in the region.

Suffolk County Council are contributing to 5% of the overall scheme costs and also expect that EDF Energy would make a significant contribution to the scheme as part of any mitigation for Sizewell C.

For further information please download the project business case or contact if you would like to request a specific document.

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.

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 (PDF, 25KB).

Download the Haverhill Town Centre Transport Report (PDF, 440KB), which includes 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 pre-strategic outline business case for the A1307 Haverhill to Cambridge dualling scheme
(PDF, 1MB) explains the Strategic and Economic case for the scheme, in alignment with the principles of the Department for Transport’s Business Case Guidance.

The Transport Asset Management Plan (TAMP) (PDF, 818KB) sets out the Council’s approach to the maintenance of Suffolk’s highway network.