Council urged to fund design work for West Winch relief road
Council chiefs are being urged to invest now in design work for a new relief road that would enable the development of thousands of new homes near Lynn.
An infrastructure delivery plan for the project around the villages of West Winch and North Runcton is set to be completed next month.
But, ahead of that, West Norfolk Council is being asked to provide £125,000 of funding to enable plans for a new road to be drawn up.
A report, which is due to be considered at a cabinet meeting on Tuesday, says the money should be drawn from the authority’s reserves to match a similar contribution from a county pool of business rates receipts.
The document suggests Norfolk County Council is also expected to contribute funds.
And officials believe that, if the necessary money is secured, planning permission for the road could be obtained in either 2019 or 2020.
The scheme is part of a wider project which envisages the development of up to 3,500 new homes in the area around the two villages, which has been designated as a growth area. Around half of them are expected to be built over the next decade.
And the report said the design work needed to be carried out so the need for the road is established and bids for funding to build it can be submitted to the government.
Lead officer Alan Gomm said: “One of the key elements of the allocation is the provision of a West Winch relief road to serve the Growth Area and ensure traffic from the new development has a minimal impact on the existing A10 as it passes through the village of West Winch.
“Specific access points will draw traffic away from the A10. This road will also have the effect of diverting existing traffic away from the village.
“This aspect of the Growth Area proposal is widely supported, and the local communities have a view that the relief road should be provided before any residential development takes place.”
He added: “The Borough Council has made a significant allocation at West Winch / North Runcton, and it needs to be accompanied by significant infrastructure provision.”
Mr Gomm said that, although money could be drawn from developers to pay for the design work, that was “unlikely” to provide the amount of money necessary to complete it.
He also suggested that compulsory purchase powers may have to be used to secure some land for the road if permission is granted.