Norfolk County Council has defended its decision to back a controversial measure allowing lorries to use a bus lane in Norwich, which was given a permanent green light last week.
The city council's Norwich Highways Agency Committee has agreed to let HGVs originating from Foulger Transport's freight consolidation centre (FCC) at Snetterton use the bus lane when roads are congested.
The council hopes the measure, which has been piloted for a year, will boost support for the FCC from potential retail customers and reduce the number of lorries running into the city.
Cyclist groups have condemned the initiative as "brainless" but the council says it will cut congestion and be safer for cyclists.
Graham Mayes, Foulger Transport business development manager, says: "Obviously, we are delighted. We look forward to working with customers with this potential added benefit. Only people with a very parochial view might have an issue with it. If they see the bigger picture, they might see it differently."
A council spokesman says only a small number of lorries will use the Newmarket Road bus lane. He adds: "The main issue is cyclists, but there hasn't been any evidence that the limited number of lorries have caused any problems."
He adds: "It is better for consolidation centre vehicles to use this bus lane because it encourages operators to leave their bigger vehicles outside the city rather than coming in. There's a benefit to everybody, cyclists included."