Friday, 22 October 2021

Route for bypass finally approved

Route for bypass finally approved

A ROUTE for the proposed Watlington bypass has been approved by Oxfordshire County Council, the highways authority.

The “edge road” will connect the B4009, south-east of the town, and the B4009 junction with Pyrton Lane and Station Road, providing direct access to the B4009 while alleviating congestion in the town centre.

It will go from the B4009 Pyrton crossroads north of Watlington to Britwell Road in the south, running north of the former pig farm and cutting across Cuxham Road and eventually joining the B4009.

It will run through five development sites in the town and neighbouring
Pyrton.

The bypass is seen as vital to alleviate congestion and improve air quality in the centre of Watlington.

It was included in the town’s neighbourhood plan, which passed a referendum in 2018 and earmarks three sites for at least 260 homes.

The county council doesn’t own any of the land on which the road would be built and might consider a compulsory purchase but says that so far landowners have been co-operative.

Freddie Van Mierlo, who represents Watlington on the council, said: “I spoke in favour of the relief road as I think it is needed because of the intolerable level of traffic and pollution which will result from the new developments.

“In my view, the road is 100 per cent necessary and I was really pleased the council was supportive of it and recognised its need.

“In an ideal world, we wouldn’t be building new roads but this is necessary and needs to happen in tandem with the new housing.

“We need to make sure we have the infrastructure to support these developments.

“The route is the result of animated negotiations between Watlington and Pyrton and both parishes are happy with it.”

Matt Reid, who chairs Watlington Parish Council, said: “It’s positive news but it comes after a long delay.

“We now have to try to make up for lost ground — we need to think about it holistically and we want the county council to submit the application [for the road] before individual planning permissions for the sites.

“We were hoping to have an application submitted by the autumn and now we have to wait until summer next year.”

A total of 183 new homes is being built as part of the Redkite View development between the B4009 Britwell Road and the B480 Cuxham Road and 240 at another two sites, one north of Watlington Road and The Sands and the other east of Hale Road.

Developer Providence Land also hopes to build up to 70 properties on land north-east of Cuxham Road and up to another 60 west of Pyrton Lane.

Meanwhile, residents of Watlington are being asked to complete a survey about transport and roads in the parish.

The responses will be used to revise the town’s neighbourhood plan. To complete the survey, visit www.watlington.org

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