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MPC(22)78.05 Transport Movements

Agendas & PapersFull Council Uploaded on September 28, 2022

Notes to Melton Parish Council on Local Plan Modelling by WSP consultants for Suffolk County Council from David Steptoe – retired transport planner and traffic engineer.  Notes on the consultants’ documents are in italics     

September 2022                                                        

 

Traffic Movements in Suffolk Coastal 2016 to 2036

LOCAL PLAN MODELLING FOR BABERGH & MID SUFFOLK,

IPSWICH AND SUFFOLK COASTAL

Methodology Report- August 2018

 

This report highlights the major improvements needed to meet the theoretical traffic growth 2016 to 2036.

In the Suffolk Coastal Area most of the major improvements will involve the A12. There will be a number of minor improvements needed elsewhere when actual traffic flows are known and these will be addressed as time goes by.

The Potential Growth Scenarios for testing tier 2 scenario B shows the new dwellings considered but do not show where the residents may be commuting to. This also will develop as time goes by but the assumption will be that most of the traffic will use the primary A roads. The number of possible dwellings to 2036 is shown on page 26 of 44.

No mention is made of 2000 dwellings at Brightwell Lakes or the potential major employment area of Bentwaters. This growing industrial park, in my opinion, needs a wide link road to the A12 to accommodate the existing HGV traffic and other vehicles. A link road would give the opportunity for other developments which would have access to the A12 and re-route other traffic away from bottlenecks on the A1152.

The report is a desktop study and physical improvements are usually undertaken after an Origin and Destination Survey has been carried out by stopping samples of vehicles and asking the questions.

 

Forecasting Report- Volume 2 Suffolk Coastal and Ipswich

Preferred Option-January 2019

 

The forecast development assumptions are based on the housing growth 2016-2036 spread throughout these areas but with the largest number of houses in Suffolk Coastal Area of

(11,990) but the job growth is highlighted in Ipswich (17,309 see P11 of 40)

The detailed modelling highlighted “The need for further analysis of these junctions has been agreed the local highway local authority, Suffolk County Council.”

Five sites were listed including;

Melton Crossroads (A1152 Woods Lane/ B1438 Melton Road/ Wilford Bridge Road).  See my alternative suggestion of one way/ roundabout in attachment ‘Melton Village’

A12/B1079 roundabout to Hasketon. My suggestion is a pedestrian bridge over the A12 and enlarging the circulatory lanes on the roundabout with possible signalisation.

 

Suffolk Coastal Results Summary

This highlights congestion problems in areas of Saxmundham, Melton, Felixstowe and Martlesham/Woodbridge.

Melton – On Page 18 of 40

“The A1152 Woods Lane/ B1438 Melton Road/ Wilford Bridge signalised junction may have the northern and eastern approaches present link V/C significantly over capacity and as such delays are likely to be experienced at this junction”

On page 37 of 40

4.3 SUFFOLK COASTAL MODELLING RESULTS

4,33 The A12 roundabouts with the B 1079 Hasketon and A1152 – ending at Bentwaters also have a high V/C in both peaks.

Junction 3: Melton crossroads (pages 7,8 & 9)

The modelling of this junction shows that with current timings to the existing traffic signals, the junction exceeds capacity on several approaches with the Degree of Saturation

(a.m) largest on The Street of 129.2% and queue lengths of 145 vehicles! The (p.m) Degree of Saturation shows 105.1% on Wilford Bridge Road and 112.5% on Melton Road.

Increasing the flare lengths (width of approach roads) and optimising the signal timings would give a capacity of 99.2% am on Wilford Bridge Road and 101.1% on the pm peak on Melton Road.

 

The desktop exercise will not take into consideration the local conditions such as the air pollution problems, the existence of an adjacent Primary School, the narrowness of the pavements, the desire lines of pedestrians and cyclists and the past accident records. There is also a requirement of provision for school children walking and cycling towards the High School at the top of Woods Lane.

Therefore, I would advise that little can be done to improve the predicted flows at this junction by conventional alterations due to existing restraints.

 

As a Staffordshire County Transport Planner, Traffic and Highways Engineer, (now retired) one of my jobs was to assess sites similar to these, for improvements.

The Melton Crossroads site needs a more radical approach.

Given that funds are not available for major improvements my suggestions to Suffolk County Highways Planning Department would be to consider;

  1. Making The Street one way from the signals to Saddlemakers Lane.
  2. Constructing a small roundabout to replace the traffic signals, making the pedestrian controlled crossings “All Red” on demand.
  3. Installing a mini-roundabout at the junction of Station Road and Wilford Bridge Road.

The improvements could be done as an experimental traffic order and observations made of queues and delays.

I believe the following will result;

  1. Fewer delays/queues
  2. Reduced traffic queues over the railway crossing
  3. Traffic moving more freely and less pollution on The Street
  4. Some of the traffic approaching from the Ufford direction along Yarmouth Road will divert instead to the A12 avoiding Melton
  5. Provide opportunities to narrow the carriageway on The Street, slow traffic, widen the footways for pedestrians and provide space for cyclists who could cross the junction at the pedestrian lights