Council makes vital bypass funding decision

Melton Council agreed this week to increase the amount it will underwrite the Melton Mowbray Distributor Road (MMDR) from £1million to £1.75million in a move which should pave the way for the relief road to include a south link as well as the already approved north and east legs.

Latest council news EMN-210311-161933001
Latest council news EMN-210311-161933001

It is hoped Leicestershire County Council will now accept £15million in government funding to enable the south section to be built.

County Hall had wanted the borough council to take on more of the financial risk of the road with it due to forward fund a total of £160million towards the infrastructure associated with the MMDR.

Members of the borough council’s cabinet last night (Tuesday) voted to accept the increase to £1.75million and that decision was then immediately rubber-stamped by full council a few minutes later.

The county council will aim to recoup its significant outlay on infrastructure through contributions from developers building thousands of new homes in the town over the next 20 years.

Borough councillors have already moved to allay fears the county might not get its money back by producing a revised plan to ensure developer contributions are secured.

The borough council has approved a Staged Payment Agreement for the £175million, which will be capped so the authority is not liable for any further funds.

County councillors will now be asked to accept the £15million Homes England HIF grant, which would enable the £28million south section, connecting the A606 Burton Road with the A607 Leicester Road, to be built.

Planning approval is still required for a southern link, but it is hoped it will be built at the same time as the other sections.

Work is expected to start next spring on the £63.5milion north and east sections, which both have funding and planning permission in place.

It is hoped the new MMDR road, passing to the north, east and south of Melton, will be open to traffic in the summer of 2024.