Work on “transformational” sustainable transport corridor for Harlow set to begin

News / Thu 21st Mar 2024 at 04:57pm

WORK is set to get underway this month on new transport infrastructure to support the planned Harlow and Gilston Garden Town (HGGT).

Construction on the transformational new Sustainable Transport Corridor is set to formally start following the appointment of Bouygues UK Ltd as lead contractor.

Running from a redesigned junction at Burnt Mill along the A1019 to the town centre, the corridor will provide upgraded rapid bus services. It also includes walking and cycling links, new public realm, trees, signage and lighting.

Funded through the £172 million Housing Investment Grant, provided by Homes England and managed by Garden Town partner Hertfordshire County Council, the corridor is an important part of the new Garden Town’s transport infrastructure.

It will help to ensure the development links to the train station and town centre through good quality walking, cycling and bus rapid transit services.

Welcoming the start of construction, Councillor Tom Cunningham, Cabinet Member for Highways, Infrastructure and Sustainable Transport at Essex County Council, said: “The new sustainable transport corridor offers a transformational opportunity and is a key part of ensuring that future development is delivered in the right way.

“Providing frequent hop-on hop-off rapid-bus services into and away from the town centre and linking shopping, leisure and train services with new and existing communities will reduce the need for car use for very short journeys and help further drive forward the local economy.

“We recognise that to encourage walking and cycling, we need to remove the barriers and through this project we will provide new segregated walking and cycling surfaces, lighting, signage, seating and cycle storage, linking the future Gilston development and existing communities such as at the Hides, with the wider cycle network.”

HGGT Director, Naisha Polaine, said: “Work beginning on the Sustainable Transport Corridor network is a huge moment for the Harlow and Gilston Garden Town project and is the start of our commitment to give residents more travel options for the future. 

“Ever since Government gave Harlow and Gilston the status of a Garden Town project in 2017, HGGT’s five council partnership has been very clear on the objectives for transport across the local area and that’s providing alternatives to using cars for local journeys.

“The new route will give priority to walking, cycling and rapid bus transit, creating a culture of active travel that’s quick, safe and good for the environment while generating a healthier population.”

Councillor Michael Hardware, Harlow Council portfolio holder for economic development, said: “Improving road and transport connections in Harlow is absolutely vital and we are working hard to secure investment into our town.

“This scheme will allow for a key sustainable transport scheme connecting Gilston, the train station and the town centre increasing the options available to residents, local workers, and visitors such as new walking, cycling and bus route. The new corridor will improve a key gateway in and out of our town.

“This scheme isn’t just about the future as it will benefit our existing residents too, helping to make the town a safer, greener, healthier, and more sustainable place to live and work.”

For more information on the project, visit www.essexhighways.org/harlow-sustainable-transport-corridors.

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49 Comments for Work on “transformational” sustainable transport corridor for Harlow set to begin:

Guy Flegman
2024-03-21 17:13:21

I call BS on this and will predict that the traffic situation on that stretch of road will become much worse than it is now especially as they are reducing the provision for cars, which everyone uses as public transport is woefully inadequate and unreliable. The money would be better spent on providing cheap and reliable bus services, then maybe not so many people will want to use their cars. Why would you change the road to suit transportation methods that very few favour?

Ron Atkinson
2024-03-21 17:32:18

This is for the residents of the Gilston village , of no use to Harlow people at all

2024-03-21 18:07:56

Lets hope that Sainsbury's do something about the bushes that restrict the view when exiting the shop onto the roundabout, they need cutting back by 15/20 feet and it will enable much better traffic flow when exiting.

2024-03-21 18:28:37

In essence then more road and transport infrastructure is being added to Harlow Town. Currently traffic is already bad on roads leading away from Harlow Town. People don't jump out of there cars into Buses, Cycles or Walking for the sake of a green agenda. Not everyone works in Harlow Town centre but further afield. Cars are a necessity for Harlow people. Have these councils been on the Just Stop Oil crack pipe.

2024-03-21 19:07:51

Public health England is shown on the map. More pie in the sky schemes that won't work. There's already a perfectly good shared cycle and foot way from the train station to the town centre, that's barely used. I only ever see one bus using the bus lanes along there, the 724. People aren't going to walk or cycle from these proposed overpriced housing estates, sorry, villages. They're not going to use public transport either because that end of town is so congested the services are unreliable. The failed attempts to get reliable bus services to the retail parks have proven that. There's no bus service into sainsburys. There's no decent bike racks. I just despair, developers and planners are hell bent on going ahead with these so called improvements despite objections and evidence the local infrastructure is already failing to cope. It's blatantly obvious these plans are approved in advance and any supposed local consultations are just a tick box exercise. I'm sure anyone doing a degree in planning would fail if they tried to propose the ridiculousness being forced on us all

peter henegan
2024-03-21 19:16:36

I thought the intention was to have separate bus lanes for the rapid buses. I also thought the buses can only be operated by bus companies, so how does this scheme get the bus operator on board (when the 8 or 9 service, whatever it was, was cancelled our MP made a little noise but was powerless). Other than changes to the West it doesn't look much different, in fact there are currently 3 lanes going into roundabout when coming from the town centre, this shows only 2. The picture looks like it was designed during a covid lockdown. Guy is right, get the buses going and fix the cycle tracks, perhaps car use will reduce

peter henegan
2024-03-21 19:23:03

Resident, sorry to sound critical but PHE isn't on the map. Also buses 3,6 and 10 all go to the station (perhaps even more). Notwithstanding my comments, you make valid points

2024-03-21 19:35:31

Peter it is on the map if you follow the link . I walk this route a lot and I've only ever seen the 724 using the bus lane, it is very lightly used

2024-03-21 19:42:22

We do not need more cycling or be nudged to it, cycling outside of a hobby is what poor people in communist countries do. Advanced countries use the automobile it gives freedom (remember that, the thing greens and politicians hate) what a waste of money. Widen the roads, rip up bus lanes and remove the stupid chicanes etc. Get traffic flowing freely and get busybodies governments and their micromanagement out of our lives.

Charles Garnier
2024-03-21 20:27:02

Adam fails to see the point, and I think his commenting here is just for a reaction. Indeed, the world cannot go on sustaining individual car use. How many cars, with their use of fossil fuels both to manufacture and propel them, are single occupancy? I think most of us would agree that more needs to be done to reduce car use and encourage walking, cycling, public transport of even shared car use, at least some of the time. It's better for everyone across so many factors from health, the environment, to name just two. However, I do agree on most of the comments here in that bus schemes and other initiatives need to go alongside this. Harlow actually has fantastic cycling provision, yet why do so few cycle? We have bus lanes galore with an inadequate bus service, often service by unclean busses. Maybe we can strive forward and with good leadership improve such things and be a pioneering light for the future! There's potential, is there the will?

Kim Oconnor
2024-03-21 20:39:28

MICHAEL HARDWARE. I just had a laugh over your last comment s. Hare you making it safer.?? How are you making it greener, or healthier.??. You all, all of you together are destroying the river stort valley... We already have seen trees ripped down, how many more to go thousands upon thousands more, that's the real truth of it. Not to mention the wildlife, this list goes on and on.. As a life long cyclist, I know you can not force people to cycle, you can not force people to walk, and as much as I would love to see less traffic on the roads,, all I see is , you are bringing thousands more people to this town, it wouldn't matter how much you think your improving the roads, it's just going to get worse, our services are broken, buy no, ill just get thousands upon thousands of more people here, on an all ready very broken services. This is all nonsense you all speak nonsense, I bet none of theses people speaking on this post live hear, all this is going to do, is make you all a shed load of money... Again this council and all partners have no foresight, no foresight what so ever..

Kim Oconnor
2024-03-21 20:46:27

Resident... you are absolutely right... 7,000 signatures against,, all ignored, consultation s, all ignored.. those signatures are in Harlow alone.

2024-03-21 20:54:13

Charles most of us do not agree stop saying that pushing that agenda. I do not agree to live a life which is poorer, colder and has less opportunities for myself or my kids. Hell the leader of the greens believes so much flights should be limited she flew often to the US to viist family. I will stick with driving and taking 30 plus flights a year. The entire climate change and net zero is a scam just like covid and its dodgy models which terrified everyone. It is time most people woke and realised the impacts on them from the lunatics who want to control how people live. Mrs Thatcher was right anyone who goes on a bus over 25 is a failure in life.

Bruce Downey
2024-03-21 20:57:55

K O- As a life long cyclist,🤥 ‘Pull the other one, it’s got bells on’ 🚳

2024-03-21 21:40:26

Still no dual carriage ways

2024-03-21 22:08:29

This part of Harlow is basically one big industrial estate. And yet the artists impression picture does not show a single lorry! I'm sorry but if you deliberately produce dishonest pictures then people are going to be rightly skeptical. Perhaps someone from the council could address this point? After you've cycled home obviously.

2024-03-21 22:09:00

Transport corridor , why ? Theres nowhere to go in Harlow .Whats the point ????

2024-03-21 22:19:06

A 'transformational transport corridor' is an absurd description for a road with a cycle lane and some flowerbeds. And that'll be a massive transformation from the current state... which is a road with a cycle lane and some flowerbeds.

Peter Lee
2024-03-21 22:27:44

Harlow and Stevenage have fantastic cycleways but hardly anyone uses them, until you understand that and change habits, it it is a waste of money to build more of them. In the last 6 months it has rained nearly everyday, this maybe a reason people don't like to cycle?

peter henegan
2024-03-21 22:37:49

Resident, I guess I misunderstood re PHE, I thought you meant it was on the image with this article. However there are definitely more buses than the 724, you can add the 25 to Brookfield.

2024-03-21 22:40:49

Adam is right. We need to get real. Sure, have a cycle way and a bus Lane, but we need to widen the roads to at least dual carriageway, maybe a fifth lane that can switch directions to cater for rush hours. Have seen this work effectively overseas. People are not going to give up the freedom and convenience of a car and we don't want to live in an authoritarian state. Individual freedom was hard won. We cannot let be sacrificed on the whim of undemocratic wokes.

peter henegan
2024-03-21 22:42:08

Adam, Holland, just across the sea from Essex, cycles a lot and has one of the wealthiest populations in the world. They are, I believe, one of the tallest nations in the world because they are so healthy.

2024-03-21 22:44:47

Peter, yes that is true and I am not against people cycling what I am against is being pushed nudged and frankly forced by government actions both local and national to give up my freedoms for a idiotic idea of net zero.

2024-03-21 22:48:44

NotbornYesterday, do you not keep up. One big industrial estate!-did you miss that we have just bought a block of flats adjacent to the roundabout, plus there are lots more flats nearby

2024-03-21 22:51:11

Holland is also famous for its cannabis cafes and red light districts. Are these part of the Harlow plan? It might make the place a bit more interesting.

2024-03-21 23:57:15

And once again our glorious Tory controlled council prove that they are purely FUBAR

2024-03-22 01:21:56

Rapid transit buses are confidently mentioned in the publicity, clearly public transport providers have agreed to provide the necessary vehicles and at some point soon they'll get a mention.

2024-03-22 04:14:28

Of no use to those of use who use a car as there are no buses that serve the outlying villages to this area. I am not going to walk six miles each way to get to Sainsbury's. Harlow was built with generous space left to expand the roads , cycle lanes are empty already . But never mind to be sustainable they cut down mature trees so the cyclists can have another cycle lane to ignore. This junction improvements does not make any sense when 40,000 extra cars and associated vehicles will be using Harlow roads from Gilston. These junctions need to be over / under passes.

Vanessa Clay
2024-03-22 06:07:28

The money would be better spent on fixing all the potholes. Some are still there from 2021!!

2024-03-22 07:06:13

A lot of the traffic problems in Harlow are caused by ignorant drivers themselves take roundabouts as an example they are used in most cases as they should be used stop give way to traffic already negotiating the roundabouts and continue on your way when the way is clear this keeps the traffic flowing freely yes? Well where the hell dose it state just to say in the so called rush hours that you can abandon the Highway Code and continue to drive on to the roundabouts ( not literally of course ) and completely block all the entry and exit routes from said roundabouts causing a massive gridlock of traffic throughout the whole of Harlow which has plenty of roundabouts to practice this completely stupid manoeuvres resulting in plenty of angry irate and downright dangerous drivers and insane driving practices sometimes resulting in RTA’s and or even death so when driving home from work tonight give this rather long comment some thought for at least a fraction of a second then shout BOXXXCKS there doing it—- So So Will I, now I bet that feels familiar to almost all drivers.

Wishes people would drive with courtesy
2024-03-22 07:48:30

Dec Han I'd add turning right from the A414 into Harlow from the left hand lane intended for Gilston to this too. If everyone used the correct lane the queue for Harlow would move faster as it wouldn't have countless people pushing in. Wait until there's an accident there one day and see how far people DON'T move.

2024-03-22 07:58:19

Did somebody say monorail? For those that know 🤣

2024-03-22 08:03:58

"HGGT Director, Naisha Polaine, said: “Work beginning on the Sustainable Transport Corridor network is a huge moment for the Harlow and Gilston Garden Town project and is the start of our commitment to give residents more travel options for the future. " This is the only truth and clarity this person has ever made. Yes for the benefit of hggt, not for th benefit of Harlow. How can you say this route links between leisure, shopping and train. I would say less than 5% of the population of Harlow could get from their house to the commercial estate i.e. oaks retail estate in less than 2 busses with a time of less than 50minutes to complete the journey. Even cycle tracks are not straight forward. It'll be easier to get to Hemal hempstead than Halfords!

Emmett Holden-Carter
2024-03-22 08:18:16

Interesting comments here as someone who was thinking of moving here as my wife is a nurse. Great idea to walk or cycle if fit and not disabled. Affordable houses no not really. I like the green space but is the new Harlow a pipe dream by the council planners What of the new town centre area, so many empty dead spaces and that burnt area of shops. What new shops as shops are closing not opening. Need cheaper houses cheaper fares and more choice of shops not more eateries. New hospital and medical care.

2024-03-22 08:28:59

Can you imagine what the traffic will be like, you only have to look at it now, Horrendous! Traffice will not reduce because they make a cycle lane, or footpaths for walking🤣 a monkey could tell you that, not some idiots on £100000 a year. You only have to look at the wonderful planning of the Templefields Retail Park😠😠 All for Herts Gilston Park, we get the pollution and grid locked. Clueless, absolutely CLUELESS😠😠

2024-03-22 08:57:19

Very sad to see another huge road scheme that will disrupt traffic for years while in progress and at the end of it there will be no improvement. It is pathetic to see this ridiculous obsession with "sustainability" and bus lanes, cycle lanes that are not used. Meanwhile the cars, which are clearly the most important road users, are completely ignored in these pathetic schemes.

Ex resident
2024-03-22 09:30:56

Ladies and Gentlemen, you are all correct in your various comments and concerns regarding this, the latest attempt to speed up the flow of traffic through Harlow. Sadly it is the same in most towns in Essex and Hertfordshire, it’s called “rush hour” and causes tempers to flare and blood pressure to rise, just try to remain calm and you will arrive at your destination eventually. On the very heated discussion regarding the town station/A414, why would the planners think that generating faster exits from the M11 for drivers and then confronting them with the constraints of Edinburgh Way and the width restrictions getting to the A414 does not make sense, Gates roundabout to Sawbridgeworth, plus many more problems. Just widen the roads, even electric cars use roads!!

Craig Grainger
2024-03-22 09:48:59

Should find a solution to car in and out of Harlow between Harlow Town Station roundabout and eastwick roundabout, congestion there in rush 3 hours is bloody ridiculous, 14 mins from Buntingford to eastwick, 15 minutes for eastwick to old harlow, kin joke of a road !!!

Keith Elliot
2024-03-22 11:40:24

Great learning from Holland at last. Need to get on the bike 🚲 know more room for the big tank cars with just one mum and one kid anymore .

2024-03-22 12:29:01

What's the point in making it better for bikes, when no bike is safe from thiefs and not much is done with people who steal, bike get stolen outside gyms etc Plus people need to learn how to use roundabouts, the one by Sainsbury's is a pain, because car use both lanes to go to the third exit, blocking the way into and from Sainsbury's and the housing estate, plus lots of the underpasses and not safe and most often flooded

2024-03-22 12:48:17

Absolutely ridiculous and a huge waste of our money 🤬

View from Afar
2024-03-22 12:58:14

Am I missing something here? What do the people living in the Gilston part of HGGT do? Do they get out of their cars at Burnt Mill then walk or cycle to the town?

2024-03-22 14:00:32

Harlow is not safe for people to walk or cycle. I would never let my daughter walk Harlow streets day or night , she will always drive , much safer in a car.

2024-03-22 14:07:24

Adam . Holland is also very flat

2024-03-22 18:28:31

View from afar it'll be so the uber eats etc lot on their illegally converted ebikes can deliver their takeaways

2024-03-22 23:37:27

Notbornyesterday, cannabis and red light districts, speaking from experience are we?

Peter Henegan
2024-03-22 23:44:26

Harlow had a brilliant cycle network, I use the past tense because the tory county council, beloved on here by so many, has allowed them to deteriorate as have the roads. I cycle but I would ban bikes from roads where a cycle track exists as an alternative.

2024-03-23 10:28:54

Transformational,sustainable plain ridiculous authors of course stay unobtainable or blamable 10,000 houses plus to the norf and sou west of us not social or council just half million pound gaffs.What about the rest of us? Spelling mistakes intentional. Stop your transport,corridor,network (un)sustainable,healthier population,infrastructure long word associations to make it sound good. Its just gobbledegook to gridlock your future whilst greedy developers get let off the hook . To the Naishayers and councils who laud the good becomeths of the plan.you can be the first to get on your bykes and do the footpath walks if you really think you can inhabit the plan hggt (in lower case)wrongly concieved benefits Harlow bloke (ess)not so take your developments and foreseeable sewage overflows away to redesign and reprazent so they dont get dumped in the River Stort

2024-04-20 09:07:33

Everyone on here de-crying improved cycle networks - you need to be aware of how travel use has changed. There are a lot of young families in Harlow & they are environmentally aware & want to travel in a sustainable way. If along with the segregated cycle tracks, we get for example bike hire schemes, or incentivised bike purchase schemes including things like cargo bikes, you will see increased usage. "You build it, they will come." I've seen the transformation elsewhere and it's what needs to happen.

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