Newtown bypass opening anniversary leads to calls for other road improvements
As the town of Newtown marked a year since the opening of the Newtown bypass politicians said they had turned their attention to other much-needed road improvements in mid Wales.
The area's MP and Welsh Assembly member say other infrastructure projects including the Pant/Llanymynech bypass now have to be pushed ahead.
Both Russell George AM and Craig Williams MP are promoting further progress on other important transport schemes such the construction of the new Dyfi Bridge at Machynlleth, a Pant-Llanymynech Bypass, the dualling of road sections at Llangurig and Llanidloes, along with improvements at Moat Lane Crossing near Caersws.
Montgomeryshire MP Craig Williams said: “The Newtown bypass has made a significant improvement to the Mid Wales economy, and I believe we now have to turn our attention to other infrastructure projects such as the Pant-Llanymynech Bypass.
"I welcome the commitment by the UK Government that they will deliver a Pant-Llanymynech Bypass and an ambitious Growth Deal to improve transport networks and boost economic growth across the Welsh border.”
Mr George added: "People from Newtown and across Mid Wales have applauded the way in which the bypass has had a positive impact on Newtown and the wider area, not only in easing the congestion issues which plagued the town, but in stimulating the Mid Wales economy and contributing to traffic improvements in and around the town.
"While there have been isolated teething problems and a few safety concerns which have been brought to my attention over the last year, there has been almost universal support for a project which took 70 years to become a reality."
He said that safety concerns on the bypass included the absence of arrow signals directing drivers to lanes before roundabouts where two lanes return to one.
"I have raised this with the Welsh Government and was informed that a road safety audit had been completed," said Mr George.
"Bizarrely however, the recommendations have not been accepted by the auditor based on the lack of evidence that no accidents have occurred. I strongly believe that safety measures should be in place before accidents happen, this is just common sense.
"I have taken the matter up again with the Minister more recently, and I have been assured that officials will be setting up a camera to monitor a month’s worth of vehicular activity and the video footage will be reviewed to determine if there are a significant number of incidents and the project team will discuss the next steps based on the findings."
He said the question had once more been raised about re-instating the roundabout at McDonalds junction and also a pedestrian crossing on Dolfor Road among other traffic improvements in and around the town.
"I have raised this with Powys County Council who will soon be taking over former trunk roads through the town," he added.
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