Work on a much-delayed new road linking the A30 to one of Cornwall’s towns could start by the end of this year.
The St Austell to A30 link road is a new 3.9-mile (6.5km) single carriageway which will provide an improved link from the town to Cornwall’s main arterial route.
Years in planning, the £87million project was due to start being built in 2019 with an aim to completion in June 2022 – but various hold ups have meant that work is yet to start.
However Cornwall Council has now revealed that it hopes that work could start by the end of year – two years late.
The Local Democracy Reporting Service asked the council what the impact of the delays was on the budget of the project and whether there was a revised completion date, but no further information was provided.
Funding for the scheme is mainly coming from the Department for Transport which was set to provide more than £78m with the remainder coming from Cornwall Council.
The new road would start from the existing roundabout at Stenalees and would provide a new route which would bypass Roche.
As well as providing an improved link between St Austell and the A30 the new road would also take heavy traffic away from clay villages including Roche and Bugle, which have long been plagued by heavy goods vehicles and large volumes of traffic coming from the A30.
Cornwall Council has also indicated that the creation of the new road will also enable parts of the existing road network to be used as cycle lanes.
And the council is working with the Eden Project to ensure that the scheme is as green as possible.
In a statement Cornwall Council said: “All the practical elements are in place to allow work to start on the scheme.
“The design of the road is complete, planning permission has been granted and a contractor appointed to undertake the work.
“The legal process which must be undertaken to secure all the land required and make the necessary changes to existing roads and footpaths is expected to be completed in October.
“Following this, the Department for Transport will then be in a position to release the funding which will allow work to start towards the end of the year.
“Ahead of the start, the council plans to issue a programme of communications so that local residents are aware that work will be starting and how it might affect the areas where they live and work.”
The Department for Transport said that it was “waiting for the council to sort out land issues before we can assess the business case”.
St Austell and Newquay MP Steve Double has previously said how getting the link road built was a priority for him.
In a Facebook video in 2019 he said: “One of the things I committed to do when I was first elected in 2015 was to work to get a new road built, to have a direct link from St Austell out to the A30.
“This is something that the local people have been wanting for almost as long as I can remember and there have been various plans over the years that have been cancelled but I was determined to try and get this road built.
“It is first of all one of the priorities for local businesses that want that better connection but also for villages like Roche and Bugle that just have this constant traffic going through the village and heavy goods vehicles day in day out. This new road will provide a real relief to those villages.”
The MP said he was pleased to have secured funding from the government for the road and said then that he expected work to start in 2020 and be completed in 2021.