Link road is fourth transport NSIP to get green light

A new link road intended to provide a more direct route for traffic to a major employment area in Bedfordshire has become the fourth transport project to be approved under the regime for deciding Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects (NSIPs).

M1: scheme would provide more direct route for traffic between an industrial estate and the primary road network
M1: scheme would provide more direct route for traffic between an industrial estate and the primary road network

Transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin this week granted development consent for the Woodside Link, a new stretch of highway between Dunstable and the new junction 11a on the M1, which is planned to be constructed as part of the A5-M1 link road scheme.

The application, submitted by Central Bedfordshire Council, involves the construction of approximately 2.9 kilometres of new road, comprising approximately 2.55 kilometres of single carriageway road and approximately 0.35 kilometres of dual carriageway.

The new road is intended provide a more direct route for traffic between an industrial estate and the primary road network, avoiding the centres of Dunstable and Houghton Regis.

The application was made under the Planning Act 2008 regime for NSIPs and examined by Glyn Roberts, whose report recommended that the scheme be approved.

In his decision note, McLoughin supported that recommendation.

The note said that the transport secretary agreed with the examining authority's conclusions that the project is in "broad conformity with the relevant adopted national and local planning and transport policies and that the socio-economic benefits of the project are substantial and clear".

The note added that, while the transport secretary "recognises that there would be some negative environmental impacts arising from the project, he agrees that none are sufficient to justify refuses development consent for the project".

Planning Inspectorate (PINS) chief executive Simon Ridley said: "PINS has the responsibility to examine NSIPs within the timescales laid down in the Planning Act 2008. This provides developers and investors with the confidence to build and improve the infrastructure this country needs to secure future economic growth.

"Since being given that responsibility, PINS has examined over 25 major projects within those timescales. This is the tenth transport NSIP to be given consent and the fourth road scheme."


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Join the conversation with PlanningResource on social media

Follow Us:
Planning Jobs