Shropshire Star

Council to make changes to North West Relief Road plans after listening to feedback

A series of revisions are being made to plans for the £87m North West Relief Road – including shortening the bridge in the scheme.

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An artist's impression of how the relief road could look

Shropshire Council's cabinet member for highways, Councillor Steve Charmley, said he expects an application detailing the revisions to the Shrewsbury road to be submitted to the authority in the next two weeks.

He added that it is likely that it will be considered by a planning committee before the end of the year for a decision.

The road, which would stretch for four miles from Churncote Roundabout to Battlefield, and effectively complete the ring road around Shrewsbury, has proved controversial with around 4,000 objections submitted as part of the consultation on the plan.

Councillor Charmley said they had listened to the responses, as well as those from other organisatons such as the Environment Agency, in making the revisions.

He said the detail would be revealed ahead of the revisions being submitted to the council.

However, they are expected to include mitigation measures to reduce the impact on the site of special scientific interest (SSSI) at Hencote Pool, increased tree planting, work on cycling and pedestrian access, as well as changes to the bridge spanning the River Severn.

The North West Relief Road has been seen as a key issue in the results of last week's elections.
A artist's impression of how the relief road would look at the Holyhead Road Roundabout

Councillor Charmley said he expected the changes will reduce the projected cost of the project, which is currently around £87m.

The government has provided £54.4m for the road, with Shropshire Council responsible for the remaining £19.8m – as well as any overspend.

Councillor Charmley said: "As part of the process of monitoring the objections and the environmental side of the project we have done a lot of work to mitigate that.

"The plans take on board the comments to mitigate those objections."

He added: "As part of any application of this size you expect there to be some revisions going forward.

"From what I have seen so far the officers seem to be happy with what they have come up with and we have been liaising with partners like the Environment Agency and key stakeholders, and there seems to be a key approach that this can work now."

Councillor Charmley said the revisions reflect the comments throughout the consultation, and added: "Some of the things which are being looked at are Hencote Pool SSSI, it is an incredibly important site and how do we mitigate the impact in that site, with all the things that go on with road building.

"More trees will be planted, there will be a huge planting scheme on the back of this, and cycling and pedestrian access, we are incorporating more of that into the project."