Centre Park Link
Advance enabling works
Enabling works in advance of the main Centre Park Link project are due to commence on Monday 12 November and will involve demolition of the ex-Furness Rigby car sales plot on Chester Road, decommissioning of the old filling station infrastructure and general land clearance. This is expected to take 6-8 weeks to complete in full.
The start of construction on the main scheme remains subject to the successful purchase of all land and property needed to build it. However we've enacted our Highway Compulsory Purchase Order powers to bring this to a conclusion, a process which is now progressing through to completion. It's currently anticipated that the main construction works will start mid-2019 to be finished late 2020.
THE WARRINGTON BOROUGH COUNCIL (WARRINGTON WATERFRONT – CENTRE PARK LINK) COMPULSORY PURCHASE ORDER 2018
On 11 July 2018, Warrington Borough Council formally made The Warrington Borough Council (Warrington Waterfront - Centre Park Link) Compulsory Purchase Order 2018 under Sections 239, 240, 246, 250 and 260 of the Highways Act 1980 (as amended) and Schedule 3 to the Acquisition of Land Act 1981. On 19 July, the Order was submitted to the Secretary of State for Transport for confirmation and, if confirmed, the Order will authorise the Council to compulsorily purchase land and new rights for the purpose of:
- constructing and improving the highway that will link Chester Road (A5060) and Slutchers Lane, which is to be a highway maintainable at the public expense;
- the construction of a new road bridge over the River Mersey from Chester Road to Slutchers Lane;
- the re-routing of town centre traffic;
- the carrying out of drainage works;
- the improvement or development of highway frontages; and
- the mitigation of any adverse effects
The land included within the Order can be seen on the Order Map, and the Schedule to the compulsory purchase order includes details of all parties with a land interest. All parties who will be impacted directly by the acquisition of land and/or new interests over land have been served with notices, and notices have also been erected on site and were placed in the Warrington Guardian on 19 July 2018. Copies of the relevant documents were available for inspection up to and including 10 August 2018. During this period, anyone wishing to make an objection to the compulsory purchase order was able to do so.
The period for making objections has now expired. Only one objection to the Order was received and, following negotiations with the relevant party, that objection has now been formally withdrawn. As such, there are now no remaining objections to the Order and the Council will, therefore, be seeking confirmation of the Order in due course. Once the Order is confirmed, further correspondence will be sent to those parties impacted by the Order and confirmation will be formally publicised, including a further update here.
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The project proposes a bridge crossing across the River Mersey from Chester Road, just north of Gainsborough Road. This proposed crossing would join onto an extended Slutchers Lane leading from Wilson Patten Street. A new signal controlled junction is to be constructed at each end of the new link on Chester Road and Wilson Patten Street.
The cost for the project is currently £19.89 million. Contributors include:
- Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise partnership - £5.3 million via the Local Growth Fund.
- Ministry of Housing Community and Local Government - £3.7 million via the Housing Infrastructure Fund.
- The remainder will be funded via council borrowing.
The original scheme has changed over time in response to public consultation. Here's a summary of your feedback on the scheme and subsequent progress:
- There's been strong support for the new link
- Some concerns about the potential one-way system in the town centre
- An alternative solution has now been agreed which does not require a one way system
- The bus gate should be opened to general traffic in the future
- The option to allow general traffic to use the bus gate in the future is still under consideration but is not planned for delivery
- At present a number of legal issues which prevent us from opening the route are being investigated and traffic surveys/analysis is ongoing underway to fully understand the wider network implications
- Proposals for traffic calming on Gainsborough Road should be introduced as a trial to ensure residents are happy with the solution before being introduced permanently
- A separate consultation will be undertaken for proposed trial traffic calming on Gainsborough Road.