Residents along the route, which will pass to the north and east of the town, have received a letter from contractors, Galliford Try, informing them of the start of the huge project, believed to be one of the biggest ever undertaken in Leicestershire.
One of their first jobs is the demolition of buildings at Sysonby Lodge Farm, off Nottingham Road, where the northern section will pass through.
Melton MP Alicia Kearns and borough council leader, Joe Orson, visited the farm site this afternoon (Wednesday) to herald this significant step in the development of the Melton Mowbray Distributor Road (MMDR).
Mrs Kearns said: “For a generation, Melton Mowbray has been asking for a bypass.
“Now, 40 years on, this important project, that will give our town the future it deserves, is finally underway.
“I know how hard it has been to get to this stage, and I almost can’t believe that the first work has finally started.
“I’m so grateful to Councillor Joe Orson for all he’s done to get the MMDR to this stage.
“This is very much the beginning of an even brighter future for Melton.”
The road is said to have the potential to unlock up to £160million in investment in Melton, in addition to traffic relief in the town centre.
Over the next few months, ‘remedial and demolition’ work will continue with the beginning of construction of the road expected to begin early next year.
Councillor Orson commented: “Finally we can see work taking place.
“The relief road has been talked about for so long it’s great to see work on the ground.
“This is just the start and at the early stages but it’s a significant moment for the future of Melton and I want to thank everyone who has worked tirelessly to get us to this stage, especially our MP Alicia Kearns and Leicestershire County Council colleagues.”
In their letter to residents living on the route, Galliford Try confirms it has been appointed as the main contractor for the MMDR scheme and the company pledges to keep people updated on the progress of the project.
It states the enabling work to clear the land started this week and will continue for four to six weeks.
“This is an advanced phase of work which will allow us to carry out the demolition works at Sysonby Farm, which is required in preparation for the main work,” the letter says.
“The site work will be limited and does not require any traffic management on the A606 Nottingham Road.”
Funding is also in place for a south section to the road but planning permission is still needed for this part of the scheme, which would link the A606 Burton Road with the A607 Leicester Road.