A detailed engineering report on the Army and Navy flyover in Chelmsford has recommended that the structure should never reopen. 

The report says monitoring of the structure, which initially focused on temperature related movement, has been widened and revealed new defects within the flyover’s concrete foundations.

The report concludes, for safety reasons, the flyover should not reopen to traffic again.

Kevin Bentley, deputy leader of Essex County Council and cabinet member for infrastructure, said: “I will not place any Essex resident in danger.

“A short-term fix of the movement caused by the very hot weather will not enable safe use of the flyover.

"The central recommendation of the report I received today is that the Army and Navy flyover should not be repaired and re-opened and I will abide by that recommendation.

“This is an emergency situation and I would ask for patience and understanding during this challenging time. Many people are taking committed action to improve this junction as soon as possible."

He added: “My focus, and the focus of the Army and Navy Taskforce, is to now decide along with Vicky Ford MP, Chelmsford City Council, and local parish and residents, on a solution to the Army and Navy junction and to secure funding to deliver that solution as quickly as possible.

“The flyover cannot be left in its current condition, even with no traffic using it, as it is still experiencing movement. Therefore I will now be looking urgently at the next steps to remove the flyover.

“At the same time, we are continuing to urgently progress plans for a new junction at this critical part of Chelmsford and will work with the public to conclude this work.

“Until then I repeat my advice to plan ahead and switch to alternative methods of transport like buses, bikes or simply walking to get to school or work.

“We know that the whole of Chelmsford feels the effects when there are problems at the Army and Navy flyover, but we cannot put the safety of people at risk by allowing them to use the structure.”