A DECISION is due in April on whether to press ahead with plans to build a controversial new road in the Vale of Glamorgan.
The proposed road would link Junction 34 on the M4 with Sycamore Cross on the A48 and would cost more than £66 million.
The plans have drawn heavy criticism from villagers in Pendoylan whose houses would be knocked down, cyclists using key routes across the Vale which could be blocked off, and Coed Cymru which has warned ancient woodland would be felled to make way for the road.
After a public consultation on the road lasting several months, the Vale of Glamorgan council has now revealed a decision on progressing the project is due in April. Campaigners have renewed their calls on the council to drop the plans for the road altogether.
A Vale of Glamorgan council spokesperson said:
“Bids have been made to Welsh Government for funding for this scheme under the Local Transport Fund but not for WelTAG Stage 3. Information on these bids should soon be available on the council website.
“Responses received as part of the consultation exercise, which closed on December 23, have been mixed and a full report on the views expressed is currently being compiled.
“A technical review group will meet in March to consider the consultation, followed by a report to the cabinet the following month. This report will determine if the project is to progress.”
WelTAG Stage 3 means the Vale council writing up a full business case for the new road, and forms part of the process for applying for funding from the Welsh Government. If the council goes ahead with the road, this stage would likely involve choosing a preferred route.
Campaigners are claiming the public consultation received thousands of objections, and are calling on the Vale to drop the plans to build the new road.
A spokesperson for Vale Communities for Future Generations said:
“The thousands of objections to this road scheme received from a wide range of interest groups will hopefully help Vale councillors understand that their road scheme is viewed as outdated and that the world has moved on since 2017 when it was first proposed.
“Certainly, the credibility of the Vale Labour-led council will be questioned if this scheme is not formally and permanently cancelled — due not least to both the Vale council’s and the Welsh Government’s commitment in 2019 to reducing the causes of climate change.
“The council has already spent £1.45 million on a severely flawed consultation process for this road proposal.
“We now need to see their determination to permanently halt any further spending on such a destructive road scheme that would damage the environment; pollute clean air; reduce leisure access for cyclists, walkers and visitors; and cost a huge amount of public money.
“It would not be acceptable to simply postpone further developments or stages of this scheme. We need to see closure and the road scheme cancelled.
“Hopefully Vale council officers and their consultants, having analysed and published the thousands of objections, will soon recommend to councillors and to the Vale cabinet that the M4–A48 road link scheme be scrapped.”