A133 Ipswich Road/Harwich Road improvement scheme, Colchester

Latest News - 11 February 2019: Ipswich Road/Harwich Road Update #12

Please be advised that preparations are being made to close Ipswich Road, Colchester and Harwich Road, Colchester. The closures are required for the safety of the public and workforce whilst water and gas main diversion works are undertaken by Anglian Water and Cadent Gas on behalf of Essex County Council. The current proposed extents and dates for the closures are detailed below:

  • Ipswich Road, Colchester on the northbound carriageway only between Fenwick Drive and the Ipswich Road Roundabout, a distance of approximately 70m.
    18 February 2019 – 11 March 2019
  • Ipswich Road, Colchester on both sides of the carriageway between Fenwick Drive and the Ipswich Road Roundabout, a distance of approximately 70m.
    11 March 2019 –15 March 2019
  • Harwich Road, Colchester on both sides of the carriageway from the Junction of Greenstead Road in a north easterly direction for a distance of approximately 190m to its junction with the Harwich Road roundabouts. 
    1 April 2019 –  22 April 2019

The works will be carried out during the working hours of 07.00 – 20.00 however due to safety reasons the traffic management is required at all times. Full access will be maintained for local resident’s, pedestrians and cyclists. A suitable signed diversion route will be provided for all other network users who wish to reach a destination beyond the location of the abovementioned closures.

Works continue at various locations around this site, the contractor (Eurovia) has provided another progress update document which we have attached to the documents section at the bottom of this page. Answers to some frequently asked questions can also be found below, these will hopefully be able to answer the majority of questions or concerns you may have around this scheme.

Works Location



Ipswich Road roundabout 



Harwich Road roundabout 

A133 Ipswich Road/Harwich Road improvement scheme, Colchester


About the scheme

We are pleased to announce that Eurovia have been awarded the contract and have begun construction of this improvement scheme in September 2018 and are planned to remain on site until Spring 2020. The work start date has changed however the expected duration is planned to remain the same.

The scheme will see the replacement of the double roundabouts located at Ipswich Road and Harwich Road with a single roundabout at each location. The carriageway between Ipswich Road and Harwich Road junctions will also be widened to accommodate two formal lanes in each direction. The scheme will include upgrading existing pedestrian crossings to signal controlled crossings and general improvements to the current off-carriageway cycle and footway provisions.

The scheme will improve the performance of these two key intersections on the A133 and renewal of the infrastructure will reduce maintenance costs. It will also improve the existing highway assets including the strengthening of two retaining walls, one between Ipswich Road roundabout and the adjoining railway line and another between Ipswich Road roundabout and the Waitrose Car Park. The Scheme has also supported the Cowdray Bridge refurbishment, now being progressed separately through the structures capital maintenance programme.

It is recognised that this is a traffic sensitive site and local residents and businesses will have a keen interest in the work phases and traffic management.   With this in mind, we held a ‘Meet the Contractor’ drop-in session with the Eurovia team to discuss the arrangements in place on Wednesday 5th September 2018.  We were pleased with the turnout and received positive feedback, especially around the road layout, crossing upgrades, the new zebra crossing and the new slip lanes. We hope that we were able to reassure residents and provide contacts for any future correspondence.

Various temporary Road closures will be required during the project, the sections of road affected will be Ipswich road (to the south and the north of the roundabout) and Harwich Road (to the south of the roundabout). Directly affected residents/businesses will be notified in advance through letter drops and signage on site. Also we will be making a continued effort to support all communications by putting updates out via our website and Social media. Each Road closure is anticipated to last 3-4 weeks and with a single road only to be shut at any one time. 


Project Timeline 


How will it affect you?

Whilst efforts will be made to keep traffic congestion to a minimum throughout these improvements, it is recognised that works will be undertaken in traffic sensitive areas and there is likely to be disruption to normal traffic flows.  Motorists are advised to allow extra time travelling through the area.

To view information regarding other works in the area please also visit

Pedestrian diversions will be in place where necessary and advertised locally.

Frequently asked questions 

Click on the question to reveal/hide the answer:

Why do you have to have so many barriers to close lanes when work is not taking place in that area?
Why will it take so long to do the work?
Why can’t you have more people working on more of the site to reduce the total time taken for the works?
Why do you think one roundabout will be more efficient and safer than the mini-roundabouts currently?
Why can’t you work nights and weekends to speed up the work and reduce delays?
Why can I often see no-one working on site as I drive past?
What sort of work do you have that add up to the works duration?
Where can I find out what you’ve done and what works will be happening next week and after that?
Did you plan for the level of congestion, disruption and delays affecting the area when you planned the scheme?
Why can’t you remove the barriers in one area of the site while you work on another?
What is the real cost of the scheme to ECC?

Further information

Updates will be available via this webpage including changes to the work programme, updated frequently asked questions, details regarding traffic arrangements such as temporary closures as well as local signage and information will also be available on our twitter feed @essexhighways

If you have any queries, please contact the Essex County Council customer services team by telephone: 0345 603 7631 or by completing the online form