Army and Navy Sustainable Transport Package
The Army and Navy Sustainable Transport Package is an unmissable opportunity to re-design the Army and Navy junction - a crucial gateway to Chelmsford – while also providing better options for people to travel and encouraging safer, greener, and healthier ways of getting around the city.
By delivering a comprehensive package of measures that encourage increased walking, cycling and Park and Ride travel, alongside an improved Army and Navy junction, we can provide a long-term and sustainable solution, improving journeys for everyone.
The proposed Army and Navy Sustainable Package includes:
- A new Hamburger Roundabout (a roundabout with a road through the centre of it) junction layout
- Walking and cycling improvements at the Army and Navy and on the approaches to and from the junction
- A 350-space expansion of Sandon Park and Ride
- A 500-space expansion of Chelmer Valley Park and Ride
- Extension of the Essex Yeomanry Way bus lane
- A new northbound bus lane on Princes Road
- Improved bus priority in both directions on Parkway
In October 2022, Essex County Council submitted an Outline Business Case to the Department for Transport (DfT) for the proposed package – the next stage of the bidding process for Major Road Network (MRN) funding. The £81million project is also progressing with part funding by the county council and Chelmsford City Council. A year later, in October 2023, the Department for Transport approved the Outline Business Case and agreed to contribute £68.75million of MRN funding, subject to certain conditions being met.
In January 2024, three separate planning applications – one for the Army and Navy junction and one each for the Park and Ride expansions – were submitted for the project. As part of the planning process, people had a 21-day period to comment on the applications. This period closed on Thursday 8 February 2024 with decisions on the applications anticipated in the Spring based on statutory timeframes.
Army and Navy Junction – CC/CHL/108/23
Sandon Park and Ride – CC/CHL/109/23
Chelmer Valley Park and Ride – CC/CHL/110/23
Hamburger Roundabout, Army and Navy Junction
Following our public consultation about the proposed Army and Navy Sustainable Transport Package, the Army and Navy Task Force recommended the Hamburger Roundabout as the preferred junction option in December 2021. In March 2022, Essex County Council’s Cabinet formally approved the Hamburger Roundabout as a preferred option. The decision came after consultation results showed the majority of respondents favoured the hamburger roundabout option. Latest analysis also showed it performed better from a business case and performance perspective, with good average journey time improvements for pedestrians, cyclists, buses and motorised vehicles.
Resembling the look of a hamburger, this type of roundabout has a main road running through it. Traffic will be able to travel straight through the centre of the junction between Essex Yeomanry Way and Parkway. Other movements will be made using the roundabout, with traffic signals used to manage flows and priority. The roundabout will predominantly have three lanes around the circulatory, while there will be two lanes in each direction on the road through the middle of central island between Parkway and Essex Yeomanry Way. A signalised left-turn slip road will be created between Chelmer Road and Essex Yeomanry Way.
The proposed design includes significantly improved walking and cycling facilities at ground-level at the junction, replacing the current subway and creating attractive, safe and accessible routes. Fully segregated cycle lanes and direct crossings are proposed, in line with Department for Transport’s latest guidance. Optimised signal timings will help ensure pedestrians and cyclists can travel across the junction safely and quickly in as few phases as possible. New bus lanes and bus priority measures will be added in both directions on Parkway and the bus lane will be extended on Essex Yeomanry Way.
Following additional refinements to planned signal timings, alongside post-consultation design changes, we have been able to enhance estimated journey time improvements for the majority of modes of transport travelling through the junction.
The latest modelled journey time improvements for the Hamburger Roundabout, as calculated for the Outline Business Case, are:
- Average journey times for cyclists will be 44% quicker
- Bus journey times will be about 40% faster on average
- Journeys will be 53% quicker on average for motorised vehicles
- Walking through the junction at ground level will be about 11% quicker on average
Army and Navy overview looking towards Van Diemans Road
With the new hamburger roundabout layout, traffic will be able to travel straight through the centre of the junction between Essex Yeomanry Way and Parkway. Other movements will be made using the roundabout, with traffic signals used to manage flows and priority.
Army and Navy overview looking towards Chelmer Road
The new roundabout will predominantly have three lanes around the circulatory, while there will be two lanes in each direction on the road through the middle of the central island between Parkway and Essex Yeomanry Way. A signalised left-turn slip road will be created between Chelmer Road and Essex Yeomanry Way.
Significantly improved walking and cycling facilities are planned at ground-level at the junction, replacing the current subway and creating attractive, safe and accessible routes. Direct crossings and fully segregated cycle lanes are proposed, in line with Department for Transport’s latest guidance, including a route straight through the middle of the hamburger island.
A new northbound bus lane will be included on Princes Road between the Waterson Vale roundabout and the Lady Lane junction to help improve bus journey times. A two-way cycleway will be provided on the western side of Princes Road, starting just after the existing toucan crossing and tying into new and existing routes to and from the Army and Navy junction.
An improved give-way arrangement will be introduced at the Lady Lane junction, with a new parallel crossing planned near the mouth of the junction to allow people who are walking or cycling to cross directly and safely. A short, dedicated waiting area will be provided for vehicles turning right into Lady Lane. There will also be a new pedestrian refuge island on Van Diemans Lane to allow people walking on the eastern side of Princes Road/Van Diemans Road to cross more safely.
Van Diemans Road
A two-way segregated cycleway is planned on the western side of Van Diemans Road. The existing permit parking bays for residents will be retained and realigned, with Van Diemans Road reduced to one lane northbound for general traffic before flaring to two lanes at the Army and Navy junction.
A shared use footway/cycleway will be created on the northern side of Baddow Road, connecting the proposed footway/cycleway on Meadgate Avenue to the existing cycle route from Great Baddow/Moulsham which emerges near the newsagents. The eastbound bus stop will be moved slightly closer to the Meadgate Avenue junction to provide more space for users and will include a new seating area. As a result, the existing zebra crossing will move from the eastern side to the western side of the Meadgate Avenue junction. A new public space will be created near the junction with Meadgate Avenue to provide an opportunity for people to pause along their journeys. The area will include new benches, cycle stands and significant landscaping improvements, such as new trees and other planting.
A shared use footway/cycleway will be provided on Meadgate Avenue, providing a new route through to the Army and Navy junction from Great Baddow. The shared footway/cycleway will start on the western side of Meadgate Avenue, before moving onto the eastern side via a new crossing point at the mouth of the cul-de-sac. An opening at the end of Meadgate Avenue will allow pedestrians and cyclists to access new facilities on Essex Yeomanry Way.
Essex Yeomanry Way
A new two-way segregated cycleway and footway will be provided along Essex Yeomanry Way, connecting Meadgate Avenue to the Army and Navy junction. The segregated cycleway will continue to Tusser Court and is designed to tie in with potential future cycle routes. A new timber environmental barrier will be installed to help reduce noise and will include a pre-grown green screen on the Meadgate Terrace side of the barrier to provide screening of the road for residents. The existing bus lane on Essex Yeomanry Way will be retained, with buses given priority over general traffic and able to merge into the central lanes via a bus gate to enable them to travel through the centre of the hamburger.
Optimised signal timings will help ensure pedestrians and cyclists can travel across Parkway safely and quickly, in as few phases as possible. Segregated crossings and waiting areas will allow more space for different users.
Off Parkway cycle route
A new well-lit and segregated footway/cycleway will provide a safer and more pleasant route into to the city centre from the Army and Navy junction for commuting and recreational use. It will run from near the Aldi store on Parkway, alongside the river and via Kings Head Walk. A new public space will be created along the route to provide an opportunity for people to pause along their journeys and enjoy the scenic riverside location. The area will include a picnic bench and interpretations board to inform visitors about the surroundings, such as the historic Moulsham Mill and the River Chelmer.
Parkway bus gate
A bus gate will be provided on Parkway on the approach to the turning into Aldi and B&M to give buses priority over general traffic. The lights will turn green for buses and red for general traffic as the buses arrive at the signals, which will allow buses to move across to the right unimpeded and travel towards the Army and Navy junction. The existing shared use cycleway along Parkway will remain, but the new off-Parkway segregated cycleway alongside the river will become the primary route into the city.
Parkway bus lanes
New bus lanes will be provided on both sides of Parkway to help improve bus journey times, while there will be two lanes in each direction for general traffic. A new public space will be created at the end of Goldlay Road, providing another opportunity for people to pause along their journeys. The new area will include benches and significant landscaping improvements, such as a rain garden to help manage surface water drainage, new trees to create a mini avenue and flowers to add seasonal colour.
Hover over image to pause slideshow
Wider walking and cycling improvements
Wider walking and cycling network connectivity improvements are also proposed on the approaches to and from the Army and Navy junction.
- New pedestrian and cycling facilities on Baddow Road, including new crossings on Baddow Road and Meadgate Avenue
- New cycle route through Meadgate linking to a new two-way segregated cycleway alongside Essex Yeomanry Way, providing an improved route from Great Baddow
- Fully segregated two-way cycle route on the western side of Van Diemans Road and a new parallel crossing at the Lady Lane junction
- A new off-Parkway segregated footway/cycleway from into the city centre alongside the River Chelmer and via Kings Head Walk
- Connection to existing Chelmer Road to Chelmer Village cycle route
Sandon Park and Ride expansion
We are proposing an upgrade and approximate 350-space expansion of the existing Sandon Park and Ride site to meet increased future demand. Expansion would be made to the west of the existing site.
- Approximately 1,800 total parking spaces, including designated electric vehicle and parent and child spaces
- A new larger bus lay-by area to the west of the site access junction on the A1060 Maldon Road
- Construction of a new terminal building with improved facilties
- Various pedestrian and cyclist improvements throughout the site, including crossings and a segregated cycle/footpath with connections to the future employment site to the west of the expanded Park and Ride site
- High quality and secure cycle lockers for overnight bike storage to enable Park and Choose (option to take the bus, walk or cycle to complete your journey)
Chelmer Valley Park and Ride expansion
We are proposing a 500-space expansion of the existing Chelmer Valley Park and Ride site to meet a forecast increase in future demand.
When we originally consulted on the Army and Navy Sustainable Transport Package, it included a proposed new Park and Ride to the west of Chelmsford in Widford. However, in March 2022, we announced we would not be taking those plans forward as part of the Army and Navy Sustainable Transport Package because of the significant construction costs and greater financial risks with operating a new Park and Ride site.
With significant growth planned to the north of Chelmsford and in the Braintree district, it was always anticipated that Chelmer Valley Park and Ride would require expansion in the future, so the removal of a new Widford Park and Ride from the package provided an opportunity to fund the Chelmer Valley expansion.
Expansion would be made to the east and slightly to the north of the existing site.
- Approximately 1,500 total parking spaces, including designated electric vehicle and parent and child spaces
- Clockwise one-way system in car park maintained and expanded
- Various pedestrian and cyclist improvements throughout the site, including crossings and direct cycleway/footway connections between the terminal building, expanded area of the site and proposed new Chelmsford Garden Community development