With work on the new Harlow Junction 7A set to begin this summer, FSB members have spoken of the positive impact the junction will have in an area that has experienced traffic congestion for a long time.
Funded through Highways England, Essex County Council, the Department for Transport and the South East Local Enterprise Partnership, the £76million works will see the new junction and dual link road created and the existing B183 widened, creating an additional lane heading westbound, providing two lanes to the existing London Road Roundabout which links to the A414.
FSB Member, Eric Chorley, Managing Director of GuardHome Limited said: I live and my business is located in Harlow. Harlow is an expanding town attracting many new businesses, large and small with the inevitable increase in large residential property developments and commuters. Anything that increases the capacity of the main arterial routes and ameliorates the current traffic congestion is hugely welcome. Junction 7A also promises to deliver an alternative path for cross town traffic relieving the pressure on the minor residential roads. This is good news for everyone concerned.
The councillor leading the project has also spoken of the critical role the junction will play in supporting businesses in and around the town.
Councillor Kevin Bentley, Essex County Council Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Infrastructure, said: “Any major new piece of infrastructure is assessed in terms of the benefit it brings against the cost of doing it. In this case, the benefits of the new junction are significant.
“There are over 20,000 journeys made into and out of Harlow on a daily basis. Through its location and proximity to London, Cambridge and Stansted, Harlow is hugely attractive to large employers and their supplier”.
“But Harlow is also a town of entrepreneurs. It has over 3000 businesses, and in recent years has seen its business population increase by double the national average. So, it is critical that we keep Harlow moving and back what is a thriving local economy.
“Creating Junction 7A will help reduce congestion, but it will do much more than that. It will create a new east-west artery through the town which, alongside other investment in to Harlow, will play a critical role in supporting business and future proofing for future growth.”
Newly-appointed contractor GRAHAM are set to commence work on Gilden Way/Sheering Road in late spring 2020, with the junction planned to open in 2022.