A12 Chelmsford to A120 widening schemeRecently updated

Widening the A12 between junction 19 (Chelmsford) and junction 25 (A120 interchange)

Region:  East
Start date:  March 2020
Cost:  £100 to £250 million
Status:  PLANNED
Type:  Major Scheme
End date:  TBC

Progress report

The consultation period is now closed for this scheme; we would like to thank everyone who took part and gave feedback on our proposals. We received over 900 responses and public exhibitions were attended by over 1800 people, with nearly 90% of those who attended rating the events as positive.

The purpose of the early consultation was to understand the concerns of the local community and road users. We wanted to understand which option gained the most support and to listen to suggestions before any detailed design or preferred route is selected. We received valuable feedback on the route options presented, along with suggestions about the junctions along this stretch of the road. Other issues raised included:

  • environmental impacts
  • other key developments proposed for the area
  • existing rat runs in the area
  • non-motorised user services such as cycle paths
  • improving safety

Alongside factors such as value for money, constructability, safety and meeting the scheme’s objectives, the consultation responses will assist us in identifying the preferred route option. We will complete our assessment work then refine the options, incorporating the comments provided where practical.

What next?

Once we have analysed all the responses we expect to announce a preferred route by the end of summer 2017. We will publish this announcement on the website.

We will continue to gather further information about the local environment to ensure we minimise or mitigate any negative effects of the scheme. This survey work includes:

  • identifying protected species
  • landscape and habitat assessments
  • flood and drainage surveys
  • archaeology
  • measuring noise and pollution levels

It is important to note that the location of any survey work should not be taken as an indication of where any future route might run and does not reflect land on which the final scheme may be.

We intend to hold a second public consultation in autumn 2017 following the preferred route announcement. We will provide further details later this year.


Date Event
March 2016  Feasibility assessment
December 2016  Identifying options
Spring 2017 Have your say
Summer 2017 Preferred route announcement
Summer 2018 Preliminary design
Summer 2019 Statutory process (including a second chance to have your say)
2020 Pre-construction preparation
2020 Start of works

Why we need this scheme

The A12 Chelmsford (junction 19) to A120 (junction 25) is part of the strategic road network and supports national and regional economy by connecting Felixstowe and Harwich ports to London. It links the towns of Chelmsford, Witham, Marks Tey and Colchester between junctions 19 and 25.

This road struggles to cope with existing peak traffic demands, resulting in delays and reduced speeds. With few available diversions, incidents and accidents result in disruption over a wide area.

Without intervention things will get much worse. Projected growth in population and local development will only increase the pressure on this road.

Essex County Council is leading a feasibility study for long term improvements to the A120 between Braintree and A12. For more information about the scheme, please visit the Essex County Council website.


With this scheme, we aim to:
  • reduce congestion and delays
  • increase road capacity
  • improve journey time reliability
  • supports the growth identified in Local Plans
  • improve safety
  • provide alternative access to local roads
  • help the transport network to better cope with road maintenance and with incidents such as collisions, breakdowns, maintenance
  • improve the environmental impact of transport on communities along the existing A12 route
  • reduce the impact of new infrastructure on the natural and built environment
  • provide improved routes between communities for cyclists, horse riders and pedestrians
  • reconnect communities
  • improve safe and effective access for public transport users
  • improve road user satisfaction

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Project timeline

Planned roadworks

Roadworks and Events for England

The latest incident information for England's motorway and trunk routes provided by Highways England

Location : The A12 southbound between the junctions with the A120 Colchester West and the A130 Chelmsford North. Reason : Roadworks. Status : Currently Active. Period : from 00:00 on 20 August 2017 to 23:59 on 22 August 2017.
Posted: August 20, 2017, 11:00 pm
Location : The A12 northbound between the A130 Chelmsford North and the junction with the A120 Colchester West. Reason : Roadworks are planned. Status : Pending. Schedule : From 20:00 on 24 August 2017 to 06:00 on 25 August 2017. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 20:00 and 06:00 from 29 August 2017 to 2 September 2017. Schedule : Expect disruption everyday between 20:00 and 06:00 from 4 September 2017 to 9 September 2017. Lanes Closed : All lanes will be closed.
Posted: August 20, 2017, 4:05 am


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