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8 January 2014, 11:33 | Updated: 8 January 2014, 11:48
The government has approved the £19m improvement of the A47 junction at Postwick, at the eastern end of the Norwich Southern Bypass.
Lack of capacity at the junction had prevented existing planning consents for business and housing development in the area from going ahead. Planning permission for the junction improvement has already been granted by Broadland District Council, but the side road and slip road legal orders also needed approval before the scheme could begin on site.
A public inquiry into the side road and slip road orders was held last summer and the Secretaries of State for Transport and for Communities & Local Government have now given their approval.
Norfolk County Council's Cabinet Member for Environment, Transport, Development & Waste David Harrison, said: “This is great news for jobs, housing and the Greater Norwich economy.
“We will now be moving as quickly as possible to start on site, and I expect that developers whose planning permission depends upon the junction improvement will soon be doing the same.”
Government funding for the Postwick Hub, which is the junction improvement and expansion of the Postwick Park & Ride, has been available since 2009 when £21m was allocated from the Community Infrastructure Fund, including expansion of the Park & Ride site. The scheme was reviewed by the new Coalition Government and £19m in funding for the junction was confirmed as part of the £86.5m allocation for Norwich Northern Distributor Road (NDR).
Although the Postwick Junction improvement is important for the NDR, it's also vital to unlock business and housing growth in the area. The Planning Inspectorate is currently reviewing the NDR application as part of the Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project (NSIP) development approval process. Whether the NDR goes ahead depends upon a Development Consent Order being granted and this will be the subject of a public examination during 2014.