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It’s not a bridge too far, says MP
ROBIN Walker has stuck his neck out over the future of Worcester’s A4440 Carrington Bridge – saying he will help lobby the Government to fund the dualling of it.
Worcester’s MP has also made a plea to Worcestershire County Council to draw up the costings for the project so that he can go cap-in-hand to the Department for Transport.
It follows the news, revealed by your Worcester News on Saturday, that a £38 million plan has been created to dual the rest of the city’s southern link road by early 2018.
The county council’s Conservative leadership pledged on Tuesday that Carrington Bridge will be next in line – but it could mean having to raise another £30 to £40 million.
Mr Walker said: “It’s great news that the rest of the link road is being done and a big step forward.
“We all know the other part of it is dualling the Carrington Bridge and the county council really needs to do the work so we can put forward a bid for pinch-point funding to government.
“If we can do this entire route, it will unlock economic development across west Worcester.
"This would be something we can get the Department for Transport to look at.
“I’d want to talk to Harriett (Baldwin, MP for West Worcestershire) and Bill (Wiggin, MP for North Herefordshire) on that.
"But the council needs to do the groundwork now. In terms of the rest of the route, this is definitely good news.”
Because no proper costings have been done by the county council, there are fears the bill could even climb over and above £40 million for a wider Carrington Bridge.
But there are hopes private funds can once again help fund some of it, especially as a planning application to build 800 new homes next to Dines Green is due to be considered in 2014.
That bid is by Hallam Land Management, which would be required to stump up money for transport improvements in return for planning permission in any case.
The £38 million for the rest of the route will include a contribution from Welbeck Land, which wants to build a £400 million 2,200-home development off Crookbarrow Way, as long as it gets planning approval.