Deadline warning on £7m Yorkshire road scheme

PLANS for a £7m roads project at one of West Yorkshire’s most heavily congested junctions are facing “extremely challenging” time scales, a council has admitted.

Councillors are being warned that there is a lot of preparation work to be done on the A658 Harrogate Road/A657 New Line junction scheme at Greengates, Bradford.

The scheme needs 19 separate parcels of land outside the existing road and early negotiations with landowners are needed to avoid the potential for compulsory purchase orders, Bradford councillors are being told.

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The plan is to complete the project in 2017 but the council’s regeneration director Mike Cowlam said: “Time scales for the project are extremely challenging with the aspiration to complete the project by December 2017.”

The council’s executive will be asked on Tuesday to give permission to officers to get on with preparation work.

Funding has already been agreed in principle, with up to £4.9m coming from the West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s Transport Fund.

Just under £2m has been secured from Miller Homes via a section 106 agreement for a residential development. Just over £1.7m of the money has been allocated to fund land acquisition.

And because of the tight time scales, some of the money to buy land may have to be funded by Bradford Council for later reimbursement by the Transport Fund.

The report says that the project will improve traffic flow and make the junction safer for pedestrians and cyclists.

Harrogate Road is a key route between Bradford, Rawdon and Harrogate and between Leeds, Bradford and the airport.

Councillors are being recommended delegate authority to officers to start preparation work. Consultation will be undertaken during the design stage.