Lib Dem Cllr Martin Wrigley secures much needed link road for Dawlish after five year campaign
A compulsory purchase order to enable the vital Dawlish link road will be announced at Devon County Council cabinet today (14th July 2021), after years of landowner squabbling.
Martin Wrigley, Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Spokesperson for Newton Abbot and Councillor for Dawlish, said:
"This proposal to acquire the land to build the much needed link road in Dawlish is very welcome.
"Although I am usually not in favour of compulsory purchase, in this case I feel that it is justified - if it comes to having to go down that route.
"This link road has been part of the local plan in Dawlish since 2014 and its lack has caused many issues in Dawlish.
"The development of some 400 new houses on what was the edge of town beyond Gatehouse school has caused misery, danger and damage while the construction traffic thundered past a Primary school, a secondary school and a nursery. Too many times to count we have seen images of heavy lorries negotiating at speed past family groups at school drop off and collection times.
"On developments large and small, the impact in highways term - during development as well as afterwards - needs to be added and emphasised during planning consultation process.
"Today's decision will mean that the remaining 800 or so houses can be constructed using this new link road instead. No longer will we held to ransom by landowners who would not agree between themselves.
"I am delighted that this decision will allow this vital piece of infrastructure to go in before the houses have been built, sold and occupied.
"I get the impression that our hands are too often tied, in how we can deal with the significant impact of highways provision in the introduction of new developments, having to wait until sufficient houses have been built and waiting for developers to fund the roads that really are needed from day one. Which makes this decision today both welcome and unusual.
"It does however re-raise questions on the capacity of the main A379 through Dawlish that it is not fit for purpose. Especially with the government dictated housing numbers in Teignbridge.
"This is very welcome - more than 5 years in the anticipation, and a long fought Lib Dem campaigns, let's hope it is faster in the delivery."