A bid for £2.7 million has been submitted to the Government to help develop plans for an £83m eastern relief road in Melton.
Leicestershire County Council has applied for funding to develop detailed plans for the road, which would be a key part of a transport strategy to relieve congestion and boost Melton’s economy by £102m per year.
The proposed eastern relief road would form part of a proposed Melton outer relief road, linking the A606 Nottingham Road to the A607 Leicester Road. It’s expected the outer relief road would be funded by a combination of Government funding and contributions from developers and would be built over the next two decades.
Councillor Peter Osborne, cabinet member for highways, said: “Melton’s congestion is constraining the town’s growth. Our studies suggest an eastern relief road could be the most cost effective way of easing this pressure.
“I hope the Government backs our bid so that we can develop detailed plans over the next couple of years.”
Melton Borough Council leader Pam Posnett said: “The submission of this bid is another significant step forward in seeking to achieve the road network that Melton needs to help fulfil its economic potential.
“We’re delighted with the progress that has been made working with the county council and key partners and will continue to focus our efforts in taking this major infrastructure project forward.”
The county council is bidding for the money from the Government’s Large Local Major Transport Schemes Fund. It’s expected successful schemes will be announced in the autumn.
If successful the county council would develop detailed proposals before consulting the public on a possible route. The line of the outer relief road and its eastern link are still to be determined.
It has been estimated the eastern section of the outer relief road would cost £83m and would boost the local economy by £102m per year.
This compares to the estimated £107m cost of a longer western outer relief road - costing £24m than the eastern option - which is thought could boost the economy by £109m per year.
Earlier this year the borough council approved plans for more than 500 houses off Leicester Road which would contribute £4.5m to a strategic transport scheme for Melton.
County and borough council officers have worked with consultants to consider options for a relief road after it emerged traffic was already facing rush hour delays of up to three minutes per mile.
Public consultation on the Melton Mowbray transport strategy, including on the eastern outer relief road, will be in addition to consultation on Melton Council’s new Local Plan later this year. The plan will shape development in the borough for the next 20 years.
The transport strategy is also expected to include smaller-scale and interim measures to improve accessibility within the town and provide an immediate benefit before the outer relief road is completed.