Plans to improve the North Devon Link Road continue to be progressed at pace, despite the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, the project remains on track to submit a Full Business Case to the Department for Transport in August 2020.
Over the last 6 months several key milestones have been achieved that are critical to the project’s progression:
- Planning permission has been granted for new segregated pedestrian/cycle crossings of the road at Bishop’s Tawton and at Landkey Junction. These additional facilities will enhance opportunities for walking and cycling in the area. They will also combat some of the historical severance caused by the road.
- Land acquisition is now being progressed at Bishop’s Tawton and Landkey, including the publication of Compulsory Purchase Orders. The full details of these Orders are available on the Project Documents page.
- Advance planting along the length of the scheme has been completed. This was the first stage in the programme of planting planned for the scheme. The programme involves the planting of over 20,000 trees and bushes to establish ecological habitats before the start of construction works, and replace trees and bushes which will be removed.
- The submission of a planning application to modify some conditions of the previous planning application for the main widening and junction improvements. This includes the deletion and relocation of certain lay-bys, changes to the design of Landkey Junction, and the addition of a footbridge at Landkey Junction.
More recently, the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in changes to working for several key activities, including surveys required prior to the start of works. These challenges are being overcome and Devon County Council (DCC) remains confident in its ability to deliver the scheme.
Full Business Case Approval Process
DCC is working with the Department for Transport to finalise the Government’s approval process. Subject to funding, DCC will start to mobilise construction later in 2020.